Angie's List: When signing up for gym memberships pay off

LEWISTON, ID - Getting in shape is always a popular New Year's resolution,and one way to do that is by joining a gym but you may be asked to sign a contract.

In today's Angie's List report, questions you should ask yourself before signing the dotted line.

"Our membership benefits include free babysitting while you work out, six months free wellness coaching," said gym spokesperson, Linda Martin. "We also have group exercises classes that are complimentary with your membership and anything from Zumba to cycling to water aerobics."

"If you're interested in starting a fitness routine this year, but don't know what's going to work best for you, ask for some trial passes at a gym," said Angie's List Owner, Angie Hicks. "Go with a friend on a buddy pass. You might find just buying the treadmill and having it at home, which has worked well for me over the years, might be your best bet."

"We really want to get members engaged right away so some of the mistakes we see is they don't take advantage of all of the complimentary things that we offer with the membership," said Martin.

"If getting fit is the top of your New Year Resolution list, be sure you understand what you are signing yourself up for before you sign up for a gym, especially if you haven't been an avid fitness person before," said Hicks. "You want to make sure your contract has flexibility in case you change your mind."

Another tip: Ask how an injury or move to a new area might affect your contract. Some gyms allow members to suspend or cancel a membership in the case of an injury or permanent disability, while others may not.