Saturday, April 18, 2009

Business Opportunity: Men-Only Gyms

I go to the gym about three times a week to run on the treadmill. One of my pet peeves is that the television choices are neither fish nor fowl; they're a peculiar mixture of men's and women's programming.

To wit, here is what's generally playing on the four screens, from left to right:

1. Oprah (for women and gay men)
2. ESPN (for hetero men)
3. Random club music videos (for women and gay men, except when a Shakira video is playing)
4. CNN (for both, I guess)

This makes for a disappointing experience for both genders.

There are tons of women-only gyms, and I can only assume that their TV lineup is more along the following lines:

1. Oprah
2. Entertainment/Gossip
3. Soap Operas & Sex and the City
4. Chick Flicks/Lifetime

Why not do the same for men? I played around with different lineups, and finally settled on the following base configuration:

1. ESPN
2. CNBC
3. Action Movies & Dumb Comedies
4. Pornography

Of course, during specific periods of the year, one might vary this up. For example, during March Madness, every TV should be showing NCAA basketball games.

Alternately, you could have theme nights, such as the following lineup:

1. Die Hard
2. Die Harder
3. Die Hard With A Vengeance
4. Live Free Or Die Hard

This is a gift that just keeps giving...you could also do Rocky, Rambo, Terminator, Lethal Weapon, and many many more!

When I did a quick search on men-only gyms, I turned up a few small outfits like this one, but I'm guessing they lack the vision to show all four Die Hard movies simultaneously. Time to jump on this concept. And let me know when you do, so I can sign up. I can't wait for "Deadliest Warrior" night!

And now, just for the hell of it, the Guyz Nite video for Die Hard:

9 comments:

Dan Erwin said...

When traveling, I bike at the hotel gym. Can't stand TV in that setting, although I enjoy the occasional action film elsewhere. I always read my newspapers, journals or books. That's one of the pluses of biking. Is this weird, or not?

www.danerwin.com

jackie said...

There are plenty of men-only gyms. But they seem to cater to the gay demographic.

I love the suggestion of playing porn on one of the TVs, btw. I would suggest, though, a porn-only bank of treadmills, with each TV showing a different "flavor" of porn.

Amelia said...

I'm a woman and I dislike women only gyms (but then again I'm not originally from here so my tastes are different I guess) and I don't care for men only gyms either (I prefer the mixed male/female gym environment)... the only problem I really have is that so MANY men only gyms are so gay analyzed or something (and sometimes the same for women too...lesbian gyms freak me out..and no I don't hate gay people)... I wonder if they even think that maybe (just maybe) there are HETEROSEXUAL men whom I don't know... go to the GYM? Heterosexual men and women are 90 % here so I don't know what is going on with this city

Chris said...

Dan,

Being able to read is a big plus of biking. But you can burn so many more calories when you run. I usually burn about 1,200 calories/hour running, and only 400 biking, so even though I can read, I usually go for the treadmill.

Jackie,

Clearly you're way ahead of me on this issue. What different flavors of porn do you suggest?

As a side note, rule #1 for the men-only gym will be no Enrique Iglesias videos ever.

I swear, that's all my gym seems to play. If I have to see the "Hero" video one more time....not to mention the fact that Jennifer Love Hewitt isn't actually that hot.

Foobarista said...

The TV thing is why my wife and I broke down and bought a $3500 crosstrainer and put it in our home office. It takes up half the room, but we both use it 2-3x per week (and go for long walks/hikes to total 5 days/week).

We figure it will finally pay for itself in membership savings sometime this year.

Chris said...

Foo,

We did the same thing. I finally broke down and bought my wife a gym-quality recumbent exercise bike and stashed it in our guest room. Now she exercises on it daily.

If we had more room, I'd do the same with a treadmill...but alas, I live in Palo Alto, where the cost of homes are best measured in terms of dollars per square inch!

Tea said...

Straight men love to see fit women in tight gym clothes. I don't think any changes in programming could make up for it. Real women are just so much more fun to watch than porn.

Kevin said...

Many have touched on this already, but let's break it down:

1)Men only gyms are gay gyms by definition, because some (most) of the appeal of going to the gym is the eye candy. If it is all men, then you know who will go.

2)Are you really saying that the best way to improve the gym experience is by what is on the tv? Do you go to the gym to watch tv? No. Ostensibly, you go to the gym to train (work out). If you are watching tv, you are wasting your time. You won't have enough intensity, you are just taking the equivalent of a stroll (choose your modal domain- bike, elliptical or treadmill)

3) athletic shorts are mesh. Do you really want one of the tv's to show porn? Not only is it an awkward environment to walk in place, but imagine the bathrooms!

Why do you go to the gym?

1) Train
2) Get out of the house (away from the family/work/whatever)
3) Be able to tell yourself/others that you "worked out" today/this week
4) Watch men's programming on tv
5) Play basketball/get sauna/etc

You don't have to tell me, but be honest with yourself.

Chris said...

Tea,

Interesting point about the eye candy. Perhaps it's a gym where only the men pay, and that women can work out for free if they pass muster with an attractiveness evaluation committee, and promise to wear the sports bra/biker short combo when working out.