Consumer Protection Division
Health and Fitness Clubs
Exercise your judgment
The Health and Fitness Industry is booming in America. But before you join any club, take some time to focus your search. Every health club is different. So visit several before you decide. And read the following tips about health clubs and the Health Spa Services Act.
Before You Join
- Assess your goals for joining and keep your priorities in mind when visiting.
- Visit the health club at the time of day you plan to work out.
- Check the hours of operation and any limitations on use.
- Get referrals and talk to members of the club.
- Ask about trial offers or short-term memberships.
- Compare prices and special offers among several clubs that meet your needs.
When You’re Ready To Join
Indiana’s Health Spa Services Act regulates membership in health and fitness clubs. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you consider joining a club:
- Read the contract completely and make sure you understand the terms.
- Your contract cannot be for more than three years.
- Lifetime health spa contracts are not permitted under Indiana law.
- Check for an automatic renewal provision; this will extend the term of the contract unless you give notice of termination.
- Under Indiana law, if the health club is sold, the purchaser assumes contracts and liabilities from the previous owner.
- Understand your right to cancel.
- The contract must notify of your right to cancel within 3 business days of signing.
- You may also cancel for the following reasons:
- The club moves more than five miles from the original location.
- The club closes and your contract is not transferred to a similar facility within five miles.
- You become totally disabled for the life of the contract.
- Your death.
If your contract is canceled for any of these reasons, the health spa must return the unused portion of your payments. All refunds must be made within 30 days. Note: If you move, the Health Spa Services Act does not provide for the contract to be canceled.
Violations of the Health Spa Services Act are violations of the Indiana Deceptive Consumer Sales Act. Consumers may file suit under the Deceptive Consumer Sales Act or file a complaint with the Indiana Attorney General.