5 Best Gyms In Houston (Budget, Pools, CrossFit, & More)

Exploring gyms in Houston was fun – despite Houston having so much to offer. Large cities always make it hard to choose one gym but, hey, after weighing them up I managed to choose Houston’s 5 best gyms for you to check out right here.

The Best Gyms In Houston Are:

  • Steelmill Gym – Best For Strength Training
  • Skyline CrossFit – Best For CrossFit & Sense of Community
  • Life Time – Best For Pool & Club Facilities
  • Texas Elite Powerlifting – Best For Powerlifting & Olympic Weightlifting
  • Planet Fitness – Best For Affordability & Accessibility

But don’t sign up just yet. Each of these gyms was chosen for genuine reasons and you’ll find these out below. I’ve also listed the benefits, drawbacks, and membership prices – plus who I think should join and who should avoid!

Does Houston Have Good Gyms?

5 Best Gyms In Houston (Budget, Pools, CrossFit, & More)

Houston offers a diverse choice of gyms. It simply has everything: local independent gyms, resort-style fitness clubs, and everything in between. If you’re into CrossFit, you’ll be glad to know that Houston has an awesome CrossFit scene too.

Gyms In Houston: 5 Best Options

1. Steelmill Gym – Best For Strength Training

Steelmill Gym
  • Website: https://www.steelmillgymtx.com/
  • Address: 4721 N Main St U, Houston
  • Hours: 24 hours (for members)
  • Price: $60 month-to-month, $50/mo on a one-year contract, $10 day pass
  • Sign up fees: $45
  • No lock-in contracts: Available
  • Free trial: None
  • Group fitness: None

I looked at a few premium gyms in Houston but Steelmill Gym came out on top for its upfront pricing. This one won’t disappoint if you’re all about strength training, offering a variety of machines and equipment in a spaced-out, no-nonsense gym. 

What Are The Gym Benefits?

Benches, squat racks, leg press machines, cast iron weight plates, racked free weights – Steelmill Gym has all the tools for strength training in a literal iron paradise that most bodybuilders would be happy to call a second home.

A big bonus here is that Steelmill Gym doesn’t hide its prices unlike many other gyms. It’s open 7 days a week with 24-hour access if you’re a member, and isn’t located too far from Downtown Houston, so it’s easily accessible no matter where you’re coming from.

What Do You Need To Know Before Purchasing A Membership?

Memberships here are nice and simple: pay $60 month-to-month or $50 per month on a one-year contract. They also offer a couple’s membership for $45 month-to-month, plus discounts for military and first responders.

Just take note: all memberships have an initiation fee of $45.

You can pay $10 for a day pass but you can only visit during staff hours (Monday–Friday 10am–8pm and Saturday–Sunday 10am–4pm) – unlike membership holders who get 24-hour access.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

None – for strength training, this is the best 24-hour gym in Houston in my opinion.

Who Should Work Out Here?

Bodybuilders and anyone who’s serious about building strength and muscle with convenient 24/7 access. But if your budget is tight and you’re not yet 100% committed to going to the gym, you’ll simply want to look at cheaper options.

2. Skyline CrossFit – Best For CrossFit & Sense Of Community

Skyline CrossFit
  • Website: https://www.skylinecrossfit.com/
  • Address: 551 N Shepherd Dr, Houston
  • Hours: Monday–Thursday 5am, 6am, 9am, 4pm, 5:15pm, 6:30pm; Friday 5am, 6am, 9am, 12pm, 4pm, 5:15pm; Saturday 8:15am and 9:30am; Sunday 1pm
  • Price: Various (see below)
  • Sign up fees: None
  • No lock-in contracts: Available
  • Free trial: None
  • Group fitness: Extensive

Houston’s CrossFit scene is pretty big. I found a handful of CrossFit gyms in Houston but Skyline CrossFit offers the full package, including group classes, foundation programs, friendly coaches, and premium equipment in an authentic CrossFit gym.

What Are The Gym Benefits?

Skyline CrossFit invites people of all fitness levels to join. It provides a free introduction and 3-month foundations course, plus a choice of class packages and 1-on-1 personal training classes for anyone who just wants to turn up and dive right in.

It’s also an authentic CrossFitter’s paradise; the gym is large and fully decked out with pull up bars, Olympic bars, bumper plates, cardio machines, and plyo boxes. And like most CrossFit gyms, the coaches and members here are super supportive and friendly.

What Do You Need To Know Before Purchasing A Membership?

First of all, you can drop in (first-time visitors only) for $30 with an extra class thrown in for free.

Punch cards are $135 for 5 classes, $260 for 10 classes, or $485 for 20 classes. Or you can choose to get billed weekly: $46 for 3 classes per week, $51 for 5 classes per week, or $56 for unlimited classes.

1-on-1 personal training classes are $75 for 1 class, $340 for 4 classes, or $700 for 10 classes.

And for the foundation courses, it’s $71 a week for a 3-month course, $60 a week for a 6-month course, and $1000 for a 6-week “The Skyline Way” course.

Skyline CrossFit also offers 6-week nutrition coaching for $300 (5 classes) and 4-week specialty courses for pull ups, handstand push ups, or ring muscle ups for $130.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

None – this gym is the full CrossFit package with a prime location in the heart of Houston.

Who Should Work Out Here?

CrossFitters and anyone interested in CrossFit. If you’re looking to meet people and make friends in a supportive environment, this is another reason to check this place out. Otherwise, you’ll want to consider somewhere else.

3. Life Time Champions – Best For Pool & Club Facilities

Life Time Champions

If you’re looking for more than a gym—i.e. a member’s club with exclusive facilities and perks—then Life Time Champions is the place. This all-in-one fitness club has everything you need for health and wellness, including indoor and outdoor leisure and lap pools.

What Are The Gym Benefits?

Life Time is a club that has it all: a fully equipped gym; group fitness studios for yoga, Pilates, and cycling; a whirlpool spa, steam room, and sauna; squash and volleyball courts; rockwall; indoor and outdoor leisure and lap pools; and a cafe.

So it’s the ultimate choice if you want to be part of a luxury resort-style members’ club where you can wind down as much as work out. Hey, you can even bring the kids as the pools have waterslides. Classes run every day and personal training is also available!

What Do You Need To Know Before Purchasing A Membership?

Surprisingly, this is a fitness club that keeps its prices pretty simple: it’s $119 per month or $40 to visit for one day.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

It’s expensive, but you’re getting a host of club facilities and member perks to take full advantage of.

Who Should Work Out Here?

Those who care about relaxing as much as working out. It’s also the best choice in Houston if you want the exclusivity of a luxury fitness club. Despite that, if you can’t see yourself using all the facilities, the price probably won’t be worth it.

4. Texas Elite Fitness – Best For Powerlifting & Olympic Weightlifting

Texas Elite Fitness
  • Address: 6421 McGrew St, Houston
  • Hours: Monday–Saturday 9am–11pm or 24 hours for Elite members
  • Price: $33/mo for Basic Membership or $45/mo for Elite Membership
  • Sign up fees: $50
  • No lock-in contracts: Available
  • Free trial: None
  • Group fitness: None

Texas Elite Fitness calls itself Houston’s strongest gym and it’s not hard to see why. It’s a powerlifting gym through-and-through, boasting competition-level Olympic weightlifting equipment and a competitive sense of community that passionate lifters will love.

What Are The Gym Benefits?

Put simply, Texas Elite Fitness has everything a powerlifter or Olympic weightlifter needs. It’s also an old-school-looking neighborhood gym with a friendly community, where you’ll receive all the support to get competition-ready or learn the weightlifting basics.

So you don’t need to lift heavy numbers to go here; beginners are welcome. And for the hardcore weighlifters, this is a place where you can chalk your hands up, grunt, and drop the weights without judgment – complete with 24-hour access.

What Do You Need To Know Before Purchasing A Membership?

Memberships here are straightforward and pretty affordable: it’s $33 per month for Basic Membership (business hours access) or $45 per month for Elite Membership (24-hour access). Both have a $50 sign-up fee.

Day passes are available but you’ll need to drop in during business hours or send them an Instagram message to purchase one.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

The $50 sign-up fee isn’t great but that won’t matter if you’re looking for the best 24 hour gym in Houston for powerlifting.

Who Should Work Out Here?

Dedicated powerlifters and Olympic weightlifters – plus newbies looking to get into powerlifting or Olympic weightlifting. Casual gym-goers, however, would probably be better off choosing a less “competitive” gym despite the affordable memberships.

5. Planet Fitness – Best For Affordability & Accessibility

Planet Fitness

Serious gym-goers will groan but Planet Fitness has the best cheap gyms in Houston. Factor in 24-hour access and 10+ locations in Houston (visit any location with a PF Black Card) and Planet Fitness becomes the best choice here for newbies and casuals. 

What Are The Gym Benefits?

Planet Fitness gyms have all the basics for strength training and cardio. Memberships are cheap and they’re so popular that people of all fitness levels are members – so it’s ideal if you’re new to the gym and worry about being judged.

I listed Planet Fitness Greater Heights but what you should know is that Houston has over 10 locations that are all 24 hours. Get the PF Black Card membership and you can visit any of them, making this gym both accessible and budget-friendly.

What Do You Need To Know Before Purchasing A Membership?

PF Black Card costs $24.99 per month and gives access to any Planet Fitness gym. You also get to bring a guest anytime, with 50% off select drinks, 20% off at Reebok.com, and use of tanning, massage chairs, HydroMassage, Total Body Enhancement, and free WiFi.

Classic membership doesn’t include the above perks. It costs $10 per month and is the option for you if all you want to do is work out.

Both memberships come with no commitment, a $1 startup fee, and a $39 annual fee.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

Planet Fitness doesn’t have the best machines and equipment and is known to get crowded and messy. The “lunk alarm” also goes off whenever someone drops weights or grunts too loud.

Who Should Work Out Here?

First-time gym users on a tight budget. If you want multiple locations and 24-hour access, these are also good reasons to join. But if you don’t like the sound of unracked weights, unorganized dumbbells, or waiting to use machines, you might want to look at other gyms.

Other Gyms In Texas Worth Talking About

Avi Silverberg
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