Gym Child Care: Overcome Your Fear

Guest Post by Madeline Glasser

Working out has always been a major part of my life so when I got pregnant I was determined to maintain a certain level of physical fitness. And I did so throughout my pregnancy.  When I had my daughter in October 2011, I began planning my body after baby workouts.  As a new mom one of my major concerns was dropping Emmie off at the gym child care.  I knew I had to get over this fear FAST.  Working out is something that I not only need physically, but mentally as well.  Before I brought my daughter into the child care center, I made a list of questions to ask my gym about.

Get comfortable with the idea of gym childcare by using these questions as guidance so your fitness can be family oriented like mine is!

  1. Is there a separate area for infants?  Many gyms have the ability to separate the infants/toddlers from older kids.  I considered this to be an essential factor in order to ensure my newborn’s safety.
  2. Are the caregivers CPR/AED certified?  I wanted to make sure that if an emergency arose that the caregivers were prepared to handle it. Most gyms have their employees CPR certified for toddlers and newborns, but be sure to ask.
  3. What is the provider to child ratio? Knowing that my infant was getting enough attention was very important to me.  The lower the ratio is, the better!  Babies/toddlers typically require a 1:4 ration (one provider, 4 babies/toddlers) and children older than 4 can be a 1:10 ratio.  With this you should find out the maximum number of children they accept at any one time.
  4. What are the policies on diaper changes and feeding? My gym will not change a dirty diaper or feed my baby, therefore, I wanted to know how they would contact me in case my daughter needed either.
  5. Is the environment clean and free of safety hazards? Check the facility out!  Look for common hazards and make sure they’re addressed.
  6. What do the other gym parents think?  Most parents will tell you their honest opinion so I utilized that resource and asked around!
  7. Is there a cost involved? Believe it or not many gyms offer free child care with a paid membership.  If they don’t, the cost is often less expensive than a babysitter or hourly child care at a center is, so it would be worth the small additional expense while getting your fitness routine in.

The verdict?  Emmie LOVES the ladies at the gym and I get to workout in peace.  It’s a win-win.  I am so glad I took the plunge and you can too!

Read more from Madeline at Food, Fitness and Family.

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