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Consumer Affairs Division

Health Club Tips

Weigh Your Options:

 

As summer approaches, people everywhere will be preparing for the sunny days ahead. To shape up for the summer, some people may begin to hunt for the perfect diet. Others will look to intense exercise programs. As a consumer willing to invest hundreds or thousands of dollars into your health, here are some guidelines to keep in mind when reviewing health club options.

 

  • Make sure the health club you want to join is registered. All for profit health clubs are required to be registered with the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs and must display a certificate of registration. If in doubt, visit the registered health clubs page.
  • Call the Division of Consumer Affairs to ask if there have been complaints filed against the health club in which you are interested.
  • Be aware that you have three days to cancel a health club contract and receive a full refund of monies invested. You are required to notify the health club by certified mail if you decide to cancel.
  • Avoid long term contracts, if possible. You are responsible for paying the entire cost of the full term membership, even if you decide to drop out after a few visits. See if the club offers a month-to-month contract or a trial membership period to give you time to determine if you really want to join.
  • Avoid paying in advance for long-term memberships. Regardless of the length of your contract, try to pay monthly. You may have to pay a slightly higher rate this way, but if the club closes you will lose less money.
  • Any initial membership contract offer longer than three years is not permitted in this state. Discounted offers are limited by law.
  • Be certain that everything discussed is written into the contract. Don't be pressured into signing a contract you have not read. Keep a copy of the contract and be alert when facing high pressure sales tactics. Make sure you know of any penalties associated with a cancelled contract.

 

If you have questions you may contact us at Consumer.Affairs@tn.gov or you may call us at (800) 342-8385 for more information or to see if any complaints have been filed.