An efficient access control system is imperative in the ultimate success of any type of business, not only for letting the right people in, but keeping the right people out.
Whether it’s a large chain of health clubs, a small studio, an unstaffed 24/7 gym or a one-man-personal training-show, choosing the right access control system for your business is just as important as choosing the right equipment for your facility or the staff to hire. Access control isn’t just about allowing members access to enter your facility, but also restricting access to nonmembers or to unauthorised areas. Who wants free loaders in a 24/7 gym, right?
Combining the use of the correct management software (see the article Efficient Systems For Managing Your Members on page X) and the device of choice for the type of facility you have or the business you run, will allow you to control a number of issues.
Major concerns include:
• Traffic volume and queuing for larger health clubs and leisure centres
• Tailgating and unwanted non-member access for 24/7 gyms
• Capturing client data in outdoor training classes or personal training sessions.
The Fast Lane Door Detective
Any 24/7 gym owner will know that one of the biggest problems in running this type of gym is the threat of tailgating. Tailgating is when someone follows a valid user through the door under one access swipe, either intentionally or unintentionally. Door Detective from Centaman Entrance Control is a unique and highly cost-effective concept and is similar to having a guard at a door 24/7. Using an infrared field across the door opening, it monitors the passage of every individual entering and leaving through the door and ensures that only one person gains access for each valid card transaction. And what if it catches a guilty culprit? The system will provide local and remote alarm indications to alert the individual and security. It can also lock doors and trigger cameras to record events.
Ideal for: 24/7 gyms. | More info: www.centaman.com.au
EZeMember Membership Management System
Platypus Software specifically designed for the fitness industry provides direct integration with several access control systems ranging from simple turnstiles through to security door access for 24/7 gyms. EZeMember utilises either barcode scanning, turnstile, fingerprint or RFID access and also the ultimate in security access, the fairly new face-recognition technology. The recent version of the EZeMember gives the choice of implementing any of these technologies to best suit your business needs. Updates in member information are also automatically reflected in the security control system in real time, so there’s no lag in updating details. In 24/7 gyms where personal security is important, the software allows you to set multiple door access restrictions such as change room access.
Ideal for: businesses from personal training studios to health clubs. | More info: www.ezemember.info
Gunnebo Tripod Turnstile and Pass-o-mat Gate
Gunnebo Marketing & Communications Officer, Bhargav Bharadwaj, says that the majority of gyms that they have provided entrance control equipment to have installed a Gunnebo Turnstile or Pass-o-mat gate. This equipment allows gyms to efficiently monitor member activity (i.e., how many people are visiting at what time, who is using the gym, who hasn’t visited in a while etc.,) and act as an effective physical barrier at the entrance of the gym to deter people from illegally entering. Whether it’s the standard SlimStiles or the more customised TriStiles, both devices are ideal for high pedestrian traffic flow areas that may be needed in busy health clubs or leisure centres. The Pass-O-Mat motorised swing gates are not only designed for access control but for customer guidance, preventing entrance points being used as exits except in emergencies. The equipment can be integrated with whichever access control system software is used at the facility.
Ideal for: health clubs & leisure centres needing to keep people moving. | More info: www.gunnebo.com.au
Thinking outside of the square, PulseTec Solutions have developed an access control solution for one of their New Zealand clients. The system allows the user to check in members participating in an outdoor training class using a paddle. The handheld reader or ‘paddle’ device developed by Tracient Technologies, uses a RFID card or key fob to capture the client’s details and then stores the information. The information is then imported to PulseTecs’ ClientConnect software where it shows up in the client history, allowing the user to manage their information.
Ideal for: personal trainers who run their own business and any outdoor group fitness classes that require capturing client data.
Links Modular Solutions
Links Access offer several access control solutions including a range of traditional tri-arm turnstiles and glasstiles that provide quick access for members who want to get stuck in to their workout rather than stuck in a queue. They have external and/or internal door access systems that can provide visitation records, multiple or restricted entry, and gender security so that change rooms and female only areas can be restricted to authorised users. It’s possible to use both barcode and RFID solutions and the door security can be used in conjunction with or separate to turnstile entry.
Another option for access control that has been available for the past five years in the fitness industry is the RFID (proximity card). Links Modular Solutions can read, write to and store information on the memory chip in the card giving members more choice in what services they do or do not want to use. Benefits of the technology are:
• Easier and full access control throughout the club, including gender specific access to change rooms.
• Access control for membership lockers (no more keys or numbers to remember).
• Money can be stored for internal purchases so that members do not have to bring in wallets, etc.
Ideal for: anyone having the software including large facilities with multiple entry points. | More info: www.linksmodularsolutions.com
Article written by Toni Krasicki for What’s New In Fitness Magazine – Autumn 2013 edition.