Lighting might not be the first thing you think about when designing a new fitness center, but it can make or break your success. Think about it – fitness facilities rely on client retention and motivation. If the environment is sterile or stark, will clients come back multiple times a week?
The key is balancing enough light for safety (and liability), but making the area feel comfortable.
Quality Electric of the Coastal Carolinas, Inc. has designed and installed several lighting and electrical systems in fitness centers over the past year. Because our sister company handles home technology, we’re able to seamlessly include structured wiring and automation into the projects.
Here are five things we recommend you include in fitness center lighting design:
The more daylight you can bring in, the more energy efficient your facility will be. Plus, sunlight is proven to have mood-enhancing abilities, which is what keeps clients coming back.
Dimmers are essential for rooms to be used for different purposes – higher-intensity classes need bright lighting, while soft lighting is best for yoga or pilates.
In many classes, the lights might be bright during the workout, but dim during cooldown. In addition to dimmers, you can achieve this effect by having different types of lights that can be turned on and off independently.
The EPA estimates that 25 percent of all energy used is consumed through lighting. Of that, three-fourths is used in commercial and industrial settings.
The quickest fix is replacing old, non-efficient light bulbs. The standard CFL bulb can save anywhere from 50 percent to 80 percent energy cost from the normal light bulb with no loss in light quality.
A more expensive (and effective) option is installing LED lighting. Your cost-savings over time will be significant and it also solves some other ambiance-related issues.
Easy-to-use control systems
It’s tempting to go with the least expensive option to control your lighting… or to go completely overboard. Both can be very confusing to your employees.
Select a control system that can be controlled through one device or app – and make sure it is user-friendly so all your instructors can focus on fitness, not lighting.
Installing motion detectors can help you save money by signaling when a room has been empty for a per-determined amount of time and turning the lights off. This could work in your group fitness rooms or locker rooms, especially during off-peak times.