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Latest News.

Under the Neon Lights: The Importance of Gym Lighting

There has always been the cliche of people starting their new year’s resolution with a health kick and joining the gym. As much as we joke about making new year’s resolutions, this time of year is critical for gyms as 12% of all membership sign-ups occur in January. However, GloFox found that 80% of new year sign-ups discontinue their membership within the first five months. With that being said, it is important for your gym to incorporate a unique fit-out that retains existing members and keeps any new members motivated to exercise at your facility. So, how can you do this? Lighting! This week, we’re looking at how your fit-out’s lighting choices can impact your members’ experience.

The Impact of Colour

Like many environments, the colour of a gym can impact an individual’s emotions. As such, red lighting can signify strength and power to energise members, whereas green lighting is often associated with peace and calmness which may relax members. However, commercial gyms generally focus on mimicking natural sunlight as their gyms often run 24/7. However, for upscale gyms, lighting should be tailored to the class and space as it often signifies a more unique experience. 

Built by Unita and designed by Collectivus, Facilities Fitness Newstead features a dark-toned fit-out with neon lighting that helps create a space that feels premium and focus-driven. Unlike some other studios, Facilities takes a more passive approach to their lighting as it is more ambient. However, lighting for this studio was carefully selected to ensure that it kept members energise but not overstimulated.

BUILT BY UNITA | Facilities Fitness Newstead, QLD

Utilising Neon Light

Moreover, noted by The New York Times, dark fitness studios with unique lighting have been recognised for conveying a premium and exclusive experience. It was also found that using a dark fit-out for gyms is also been appealing to members as some feel more comfortable exercising in an environment that doesn’t make them feel overexposed. 

According to Advantage Fitness, neon lighting is one of the best lighting styles to include in fitness studios and gyms. As neon lights are heavily concentrated and bright, they can help energise visitors. However, it was also noted that neon lights should be used strategically as they can cause stress if they are overdone. Well executed neon lighting can also make the studio or gym feel more ‘stage-like’. The owner of New York-based fitness studio, Tone House stated his team decided to use a dark fit-out with neon lighting as it simulated the feeling of being on a football pitch at night. He said, “I think of football when the games are usually played at night,” he said. “It brings out the best in you — it allows you to unleash your inner athlete.



Currently, we’re in love with the internationally recognised UK based fitness studio, 1Rebel. This fitness studio incorporates a dark fit-out for their studio rooms which are contrasted with neon lights. The juxtaposition of the room and its lighting helps create an environment that sets the tone for the different classes they offer. As an example, their functional fitness class, “Grit” incorporates red neon lights to signal that the class is high energy and high intensity. While on the contrary, their pilates class, “Reform” class utilises a mix of blue and red neon lights to energise members while also fostering a sense of focus. 

In addition, 1Rebel has gone a step further with its lighting choices by incorporating a “nightclub” feel to its cycling amphitheatre. Featuring a large stereo system, lasers and flashing stage lights. 1Rebel has the gym has reimagined the way we train an experience like no other.



1Rebel’s additional facilities like their change rooms feel like anything but a gym. Change rooms are often an overlooked space within our gyms. As many use this space to take photos, it is key to utilise the correct lighting. Downward and warmed toned lighting has been noted as the best lighting to help manipulate shadows and make you look your best. Seen by 1Rebel, their change room facility features a unique design with copper doors and polished concrete floors that are complimented with warm downward lighting.


INSPIRED BY | 1Rebel Gyms, UK

Essentially, with well-suited lighting like 1Rebel, a fitness space can help set the mood for the class and help dictate a gym-goer’s mood. Lighting choices should be carefully evaluated to signify your gym’s personality and desired member experience. Keeping the lighting relevant to the general space and fitness classes can help keep members feeling motivated to exercise at your gym and all-in-all help retain new year members over the five critical months after signing up. 

Do you want a gym fit-out with a competitive edge? Contact us today and we’ll get transform your space into winning condition!

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