Getting back into the gym after having kids is challenging because finding time is hard. Some gyms offer child care which is a great benefit because you don’t have to worry about your kids when you are at the gym.
The following gyms offer in-house childcare options: Retro Fitness, Lifetime Fitness, Gold’s Gym, Crunch Fitness, and World Gym. If your gym doesn’t offer childcare, you may need to develop a childcare system that allows you and either your partner or another parent at the gym to alternate workout times, or find a nearby childcare facility.
Keep reading for a complete rundown on which gyms do and do not offer childcare and what to do if your gym doesn’t.
The best gyms that offer childcare
Some gyms offer childcare as an added-on option with a fee or it comes with a higher membership tier.
Here are some of the popular gym options that have childcare in-house:
- Retro Fitness
- Lifetime Fitness
- Gold’s Gym
- Crunch Fitness
- World Gym
Before taking your child with you to your workout, definitely do your research on your specific gym to find out if it’s part of your specific membership, what ages are covered, and what your little one will be doing during your gym time.
Retro Fitness was founded in 2004 by Eric Casuburi and it has locations in the Northeast Region of the US.
Children 6 months to 13 years old are included in the membership amenities, but not at every membership tier. If you want childcare, your membership level should be the Ultimate .15 enrollment level which is $29.99/month. This membership covers up to 2 children and if you add additional children, it will be an added fee of $10 per child per month.
Childcare is offered for kids between the ages of 6 months to 13 years, Monday to Saturday. Since each facility is owned by an individual franchisee, childcare hours might vary by location, be sure to contact your local Retro Fitness for accurate information.
Learn more about Retro Fitness and its childcare options!
Lifetime Fitness is a high-end health club and fitness center that boasts a wellness experience for family members from 90 days to 90 years.
Lifetime Fitness has a play area for kids that is available for children who are aged 3 months to 11 years. Hours for the Kids Area vary depending on the location, so it’s best to contact your local Lifetime Fitness gym for additional information. There are also Kids Camps that come with a fee that you can avail of during summer or school breaks.
The Kids Area is a safe and fun place for kids while you work out.
Members of Lifetime Fitness can leave their children up to two allotted hours each day per child.
Children are grouped by age and into different groups like infants, toddlers, and kids so that they can play with other children their same age.
For toddlers, the activities include tumbling and other fun exercises to get them moving. For kids that are three and up, they can explore the learning lab, gym time, and play maze.
Learn more about Lifetime Fitness’ childcare options!
Gold’s Gym is a popular fitness center, and there’s probably a location near you.
Gold’s Gym has Kids Club which is a drop-off babysitting service for children ages from 6 months to 11 years old, and it comes with the regular membership or the Golds Fit membership.
The hours can vary by location but the typical hours are 8 am to 2 pm and 4 pm to 9 pm on weekdays and 8:30 am to 1:30 pm on the weekends. Because Gold’s Gym is independently owned and operated, the hours and availability will vary depending on the location.
The Kids Club in Gold’s Gym prides itself on creating a fun and learning environment for the kids while you work out. The kids can participate in age-appropriate activities, arts and crafts as well as socially interact with other kids their age.
Access to the Kid’s Club comes with the Gold’s Gym regular membership which is $29 and the GoldsFit membership which costs $69. If you don’t have a membership, you can still drop off your kids and there is a drop-in rate that varies by location.
Learn more about Gold’s Gym and its childcare options.
Crunch Fitness is an inclusive, judgment-free zone that is a welcoming space for parents who need a break or are trying to get back in the swing of things after having a baby.
Most Crunch Fitness locations have Kid’s Crunch but it is always recommended to check with your local gym to make sure. Kid’s Crunch is available every day including weekends. There is an additional cost to use Kid’s Crunch but it is included in the Peak Results Plan membership which is $29.99 per month. Kids who are as young as 6 months to 13 years of age can go into Kid’s Crunch.
When your kids turn 13 or 14, they will have a chance to be your guests in the gym so that they can also work out. Early exposure to fitness is important especially with growing kids so they are encouraged to work out as well.
All Kid’s Crunch employees are committed to bringing a safe and secure environment for your kids and all of them are CPR and first-aid certified. There are different activities that your kids can get into including coloring activities, books, small toys, and movies.
If your membership does not include Kid’s Crunch, you can drop in your kids with a daily fee of $5.
Learn more about Crunch Fitness and its childcare options!
World Gym is a very popular gym chain with more than 40,000 locations in the United States alone.
Like many other fitness centers, each World Gym location is independently owned. Because of this, childcare options vary depending on location. It is best to contact your local World Gym for any questions and specific information.
If your World Gym location offers childcare, it is usually a drop-in and the parents have to remain on the premises if they are dropping off their kids. The time for drop-off is in two-hour set blocks for weekday childcare. There are usually morning and afternoon or early evening blocks to accommodate different schedules.
The typical age of children that can be left in the childcare facility is one year old to 11 years old. Some locations can take in younger babies, but make sure that you are contacting your local gym for additional information.
Most memberships cover the cost of childcare but some operate on a drop-in fee with a maximum fee of $15 per child.
Learn more about Gold’s Gym and its childcare options.
Gyms that DON’T offer childcare
On the other hand, there are plenty of local gyms that are smaller and most likely, family-owned who don’t have childcare options. Some gyms have cheaper membership fees that don’t offer childcare.
Here are some popular gyms that do not have childcare options:
What to do if your gym doesn’t offer childcare
It can be challenging when your gym doesn’t have childcare options, but this should not stop you from trying to work on your fitness and going to the gym.
The best options if your gym doesn’t have childcare are:
- Develop a childcare plan with your partner
- Wait until the kids are asleep or before they wake up
- Find a nearby childcare facility
- Coordinate with other moms and dads who go to the gym
Sometimes it pays to think outside the box so that you can make this work for you and your situation.
Develop a childcare plan with your partner
If both you and your partner work out, you can develop a schedule together where you can take turns in watching the kids while the other partner works out.
This ensures that somebody will be with the kids while the other partner works out.
Wait until the kids are asleep or before they wake up
The good thing about gyms is that the operating hours can range from early in the morning to late at night.
You may be able to work this into your schedule even if you have to wait until the kids are asleep or before they wake up so that you can work out.
Find a nearby childcare facility
If your gym does not offer childcare, you can research and find a nearby childcare facility that offers childcare.
Sometimes they partner up with the gyms and you can get a discounted rate for your kids.
Coordinate with other moms and dads who also go to the gym
Working with other parents to set up a shared workout schedule is a great option especially if some other moms and dads go to the gym and have little ones.
You can form your childcare group, coordinate schedules, and switch off with taking care of the kiddos while the other person works out.
This is a win-win for all parties involved plus it will give the kids a chance to socialize with other kids.