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What do your locker rooms say about you?
Lockers are often a seen by gym and leisure operators as a complete nightmare, and a headache they could well don’t without. Snapped keys, damaged doors and state of the art keyless locks that simply don’t do what they are supposed to, are regular gripes that we hear.
Couple that, with users treating their locker as something they own, and leaving their stuff in it indefinitely, does nothing to compound the issue.
Below are a few tips to keep your lockers looking good, fully functional and reducing those all-important stress levels.
Damage breeds damage
Whilst most lockers are pretty robust, they are susceptible to damage from regular use, or vandalism. Even a couple of broken locks can very quickly lead to more extensive damage, and the eventual need to replace the whole system. It doesn’t have to be like this; by simply keeping an eye on your lockers and replacing damaged parts, your lockers can last indefinitely. This will save you a small fortune in the long run, and your customers will be happy to have lockers they can use with confidence.
Keep them clean & hygienic
It’s a fact that there are some quite nasty bugs lurking at your gym or leisure club; E-coli, MRSA and other bacteria can be found at some of the cleanest sites. Most operators are great at ensuring that facilities are kept clean and hygienic, but lockers are often overlooked.
These can be some of the worst offenders; sweaty clothes, shoes and the fact that lockers are normally located near showers or toilets, compound the problem.
Simply spraying each compartment with an anti-bacterial spray on a daily basis will help keep your lockers clean, hygienic and smelling fresh.
Do your homework before converting your lockers
Technology is starting to play a big part in lockers. Leisure operators are shunning simple locks and keys or padlocks, and instead choosing expensive card or code operated electronic locking systems that promise to take the man hours and stress out of managing your lockers.
This is to a certain extent true; these new state of the art locker systems can be fantastic, a revelation even, but don’t get caught out like lots of owners we speak to regularly.
Choosing the wrong lock can in fact cause more problems than the more traditional lock you are replacing.
Reliability is the most common complaint we see, some locks just don’t live up to the billing and breakdowns can cause huge problems.
Another common issue Is that some locks are just too complicated for users and operators alike to use and allocate.
The way round this is to firstly speak to an independent locker parts expert who can recommend a system based upon your individual needs, and one that is proven in the field.
Before ordering in bulk, make sure you have a lock test-fitted to your lockers to make sure it works for you.
Kick out the hoarders
Another major problem owners tell us about, is that some users decide to treat their lockers as their own personal space to keep indefinitely. You then end up with angry customers telling you that there are not enough lockers for their belongings.
There are couple of ways to get around this, the first is to inform your members/users that all lockers will be opened at the end of the day and any belongings left will be disposed of.
The second way is to purchase keyless locks that automatically open either after a defined time period normally either 2, 4 or 6 hours or locks that feature a real time clock and enable the operator to programme them all to open at a certain time automatically.
Theft is a major problem facing gym operators right now and there has been a significant rise over the last 5 years, as locker rooms are seen as a soft target.
You can help reduce theft by ensuring staff check the changing rooms regularly, installing a CCTV camera or access card lock outside the entrance to the changing rooms will also make the criminals think twice.
Ensuring your lockers are kept in good condition will also deter theft.
Consider a refurb
There will come a time when your locker doors will look tired and are no longer reflect the image of your brand. You can either replace the whole locker system or maybe consider just replacing the locks and doors. This would be much cheaper and you can create a unique look using a whole range of materials.
Not enough lockers, try this…
New members are great, but what happens if you don’t have enough lockers to cope with demand. Most users like to travel light, perhaps only wanting to store their phone keys or purse.
Why not install a personal items locker on the wall by your reception. These are big enough for small items and will give you increased storage capacity without taking up too much space.
Thanks for reading. I hope our handy hints and tips will help you save money and reduce those all-important stress levels.