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Planet Fitness has opened two new locations in Coon Rapids and Burnsville. Through March 31, anyone can join for $1 down and $10 a month with no commitment. If Brooklyn Park or Bloomington is more convenient, it will only cost $10 down and $10 a month join through April 9. (Roseville is $10 a month plus a $29 enrollment fee through March 31.)

Although those may be among the least expensive fees for fitness clubs in the Twin Cities, even $10 a month (which is deducted automatically from a checking account) is too much if you don't use the account.

Spring, moving at a glacial pace this year, will arrive and you members may lose interest in a club after warm weather arrives. That's why clubs save their best deals for summer when interest is low.

Location, location, location. Make sure the health club is close to home or work, ideally less than 10 minutes away. Consider parking, too. Driving around a crowded lot or street a couple times may send you off to DQ in frustration.

Visit the club on days and times when you expect to work out. Ask about its busiest hours ( Most are busiest from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.).

Questions to ask a salesperson:
What is the ratio of staff to members?
Is the membership transferable?
What kind of certification do your fitness instructors have?
Can I get a free week before I join? (Try to duplicate your weekly estimated regimen at a club
before you join. All clubs will give you one free pass, but you may have to pay for more.)

According to Planet Fitness, it is a gym for all that targets first time or occasional gym users, not fitness fanatics or bodybuilders. The company uses a “Judgement Free Zone” in all clubs and a campaign to eliminate “gymtimidation.” “Lunk” alarms (a purple and yellow siren on the walls of every club) go off if members exhibit poor gym etiquette that make others feel intimidated.