Gyms

Here’s What $15 a Month (Or Less!) Gets You at 4 Philly-Area Gyms

You may not get all the fancy bells and whistles at these gyms, but you get to work out — and that's what it's all about.


Photo courtesy of Blink Fitness

While we appreciate boutique fitness studios of all kinds — the spin addiction is real, you guys — attending group fitness classes on the reg can get expensive. Since all that really matters is that you get moving — not where you getting it done — we decided to round up some local big box gyms that offer a very affordable memberships to see what makes each one worth a visit.

While each of the four gyms chains below offers more expensive memberships that come with added perks (like group fitness classes, personal training, and childcare) we wanted to see what you can get for their base memberships, all of which are $15 and under a month. Read on for a handy-dandy guide to local big box gyms where you can save some $$$ every month — all the better to feed your boutique fitness budget.

The Edge Fitness Clubs

Edge Fitness Club’s turf and sprint track area | Photograph by Bailey King.

Where: Multiple locations in the Philadelphia area, including Cherry Hill and Delran

Base-rate membership: $9.99 per month

What’s included: 24-hour gym access, full fitness floor access, complimentary one-time fitness assessment

Gym floor: At the Cherry Hill location, the gym floor is spacious to say the least. There’s a sizable turf space, sprint track, plenty of cardio machines, and a huge weight area stocked with free weights and weightlifting machines. Long story short: there’s plenty of room for you to get your sweat on.

Locker rooms: Let me put it this way: based on the locker rooms, you’d have no idea that a membership to this gym has such affordable options — it leans much more toward the likeness of a boutique studio or spa. Marble walls, a sauna (!!), and plenty of showers, toilets, and changing stalls provide a luxurious feel.

Special amenities: Aside from the locker room — which is 100 percent on point — The Edge has a few other tricks up their sleeves: Edge Cinema is a move theater-like room, separate from the gym floor where there’s a huge screen showing movies (with sound) all day long in front of rows of treadmills, elliptical, and bikes for those who like some entertainment while they sweat. This gym also boasts a smoothie bar — it’s not free but is still cool — serving up protein shakes and smoothies. For your little ones, you can opt for a separate membership for Edge Kids where there’s a kid-friendly fitness schedule, or you can opt to pay for a drop-in whenever necessary.

Blink

Blink Fitness South Philly stretching area | Photograph by Bailey King.

Where: South Philly, Wissinoming, and the Northeast (Academy Road and Willingboro)

Base-rate membership: $15 per month

What’s included: Full access to the entire gym floor and equipment, use of locker rooms stocked with shampoo and body wash, complimentary start-up personal training session

Gym floor: Cleanliness is literally one of the pillars that Blink built itself on and it shows — you’ll find staff members deep cleaning regularly throughout the day which, as gym-goers, we are SO here for. Aside from that, Blink boasts a modern and colorful space with spacious (and color-coded!) zones for cardio, weightlifting, and stretching.

Locker rooms: As we mentioned, Blink locker rooms are stocked with body wash and shampoo — which is great because that’s two less things you have to lug around with you all day. Blink’s cleanliness efforts certainly reach the locker rooms as well — they’re clean, modern, and have plenty of room in the locker and changing area.

Special amenities: In a way, Blink’s approach is rather scientific. The colors you find on the walls (blue, green, and orange) were chosen to enhance both your workout and your mood. All around the gym, you’ll find stretching and workout suggestions, so if you’re an inexperience or unprepared gym goer you won’t have to be pulling up Pinterest every other set. The music played in the gym is noticeable, but not so loud as to overshadow the tunes in your headphones, and their playlists are curated so the beat of the music matches a human heart rate. And one more bonus — joining fees are cheap here, so you’ll never have to put more than 12 bucks down to begin your membership.

Crunch Fitness

Crunch Fitness Delran gym floor | Photograph by Bailey King.

Where: Multiple locations including Huntingdon Valley, Delran, East Norriton

Base-rate membership: $9.95 per month

What’s included: Full access to all of the weights and equipment on the gym floor, online nutrition advice via Crunch’s app, and a personal training session

Gym floor: Here, you’ll find all of the gym equipment you need to get your workout on from cardio machines to weight lifting to even a CrossFit-esque training station and power-lifting area. Crunch also features a program dubbed the “power half-hour circuit training” which is a collection of weightlifting machines that you complete for a full body workout in a matter of 30 minutes.

Locker rooms: The locker rooms here are pretty basic, but that’s what you get for a basic membership, right? You’ve got lockers, benches, showers, and a spot to change at Crunch.

Special amenities: Crunch’s “power half-hour circuit training” and online nutrition advice are the major special amenities aside from, you know, having a place to work out.

Planet Fitness

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Where: Multiple locations in the Philadelphia area, including South Philly, Fishtown, and Parkside

Base-rate membership: $10 per month

What’s included: Unlimited 24-hour access to your home gym, free fitness training, free wifi, and a free t-shirt

Gym floor: Planet Fitness takes their in-house branding very seriously, as you’ll notice by the purple-and-yellow everything, from machines to mats to the walls. Planet Fitness locations feature ample cardio and weightlifting machines as well as free weights and stretching areas. Some locations feature a 12-minute ab work zone as well.

Locker rooms: Planet Fitness locker rooms feature lockers, benches, showers, and toilets. A bonus if you’re hitting the gym before work: Most locations have hair dryers in their locker rooms as well.

Special amenities: In addition to the 12-minute ab zone mentioned above, Planet Fitness also boasts a 30-minute full body workout zone similar to Crunch’s. Here, you’ll find a myriad of machines and cardio step stations and a timer (well, it’s actually a green and red light) that keeps you on track to finish everything in 30 minutes — if that’s your goal. Free training is also certainly something to take advantage of — all Planet Fitness trainers are certified and ready to instruct you on all of the gym’s equipment and machinery.

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