Chain gym personal trainers, yanking my chain.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 31, 2008 2:51 PM GMT
    I usually go to LA Fitness and I wanted to start weight training. I’ve done a ton of cardio the past months, and lost some weight I gained from when I used to drink. Now, I’d like to start weight lifting but I’m pretty clueless and could use a slight push of knowledge. I figured let me just get a personal trainer at LA Fitness.

    I sat down with the trainer at LA Fitness and I said, I’d like to sign up but I’m a college student so I have to see what the cost are to see if I can afford it. She informed me, they can’t speak of prices and that I just need to sign up and then we could work it out. That blew my mind. When I went the next day, I spoke to a different trainer and he said the same thing!

    Is it best to try to find an independent freelancing personal trainer or use a gym’s personal trainer?

    I have a lot of options near me.

    Bally’s – who gives a two-week pass that includes personal training.

    24 Hour Fitness – who actually just list the prices online. I hear they have good online promotions on certain days as well. Any input on this?

    Fitness Together – which is a chain personal training facility.

    Gold’s Gym and Club Fit – close by, but offers no information on personal training online.

    My university – free gym. In the process of being rebuilt but won’t be open till November or so. I don’t really want that 12-month contract cause there is high hopes for this university’s gym. They may even offer personal training. (http://www.fau.edu/campusrec/fitness/personal_training.php)

    I also live in South Florida (Pembroke Pines) so there may some gyms around that I may not know of. Who’s best? Help!
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    Aug 31, 2008 4:48 PM GMT
    I'd say buyer beware of gym based personal training companies. Check out the trainers' credentials because you could easily get injured. My experience with gym based personal training has not been good. I'd say buyer beware. This has been my experience, and I know several other people who have had similar experiences.

    1. High turnover rate. The trainers there were obviously NOT serious about helping people reach their goals.
    2. Automatic draft- my personal training company was affiliated with my gym, but they weren't a part of the same company so I couldn't handle the finances in one place. When I went to cancel the personal training, I wound up sending in 5 certified letters and I'd threatened to sue before the money stopped coming out of my account. I wound up paying a few thousand dollars altogether on crap service.
    3. Trainer credentials- Definitely check out certifications or degrees. Some personal training companies are extremely pompous, and try to shove their services down your throat as if they're doing you some huge favor by taking your money and then not disclosing pertinent information. Just because someone has big muscles doesn't mean they know a thing about exercise kinesiology, or how to train someone else successfully.

    Ok, I'm obviously still bitter, and I know there are personal trainers here who work out of gyms. I'm not saying that all gym based personal training is bad, and that there aren't good qualified professional trainers out there. You can find a beginner work out program and demonstrations of exercises with less headache and financial commitment online.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19133

    Aug 31, 2008 4:52 PM GMT
    Save your money and study some of the workout & nutrition tips right here at Real Jock that are free.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:10 PM GMT
    You might try visiting Barnes and Nobles or Amazon and look for a basic book about getting started. There are a lot of excellent books for a beginner. Some even include logs that let you keep track of your progress. I bought one of the "For Dummies" books about lifting, and then supplemented it with the great information right here at realjock. If you find you really need a workout partner, then post on craigslist (or here) that you're looking for someone to lift with.

    Good luck, and have fun!
  • NYCguy74

    Posts: 311

    Aug 31, 2008 5:12 PM GMT
    As far as "going on your own" be careful, because there is a great chance of injury from bad form.

    If you have a friend / coworker who is into working out, see if you can work something out with them to go with you for a couple weeks. (even maybe non monetary if you're short on cash) just to get basic form down, sometimes it's hard to remember all the little do's and don'ts when you're actually trying to move the weight. plus you may not realize that you are using bad form. Just stay with them untill you get used to how it's supposed to feel when doing different exercises.
    If you don't know anyone, maybe ask another member at the gym. Especially at the university gym, you might find a college student in need of a little extra $$, Just don't go for the roid head giant guy, look for someone who is there frequently and decently built, normally the ones you don't notice would be the best choice.

    also maybe there is a PE class at the school that you could take.


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    Aug 31, 2008 5:34 PM GMT
    juliogarcia said

    I sat down with the trainer at LA Fitness and I said, I’d like to sign up but I’m a college student so I have to see what the cost are to see if I can afford it. She informed me, they can’t speak of prices and that I just need to sign up and then we could work it out. That blew my mind. When I went the next day, I spoke to a different trainer and he said the same thing!


    i'm sorry, that is unacceptable. maybe that's how they do it at LA Fitness, but at my gym they tell you exactly how much a package of personal training sessions cost. I've never even heard of such a ridiculous thing, you don't know how much you'll be paying before you sign up?? Is this an auction? Can you hire William Shatner to be your Priceline Negotiator?
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:37 PM GMT
    NYCguy74 saidAs far as "going on your own" be careful, because there is a great chance of injury from bad form.

    If you have a friend / coworker who is into working out, see if you can work something out with them to go with you for a couple weeks. (even maybe non monetary if you're short on cash) just to get basic form down, sometimes it's hard to remember all the little do's and don'ts when you're actually trying to move the weight. plus you may not realize that you are using bad form. Just stay with them untill you get used to how it's supposed to feel when doing different exercises.
    If you don't know anyone, maybe ask another member at the gym. Especially at the university gym, you might find a college student in need of a little extra $$, Just don't go for the roid head giant guy, look for someone who is there frequently and decently built, normally the ones you don't notice would be the best choice.

    also maybe there is a PE class at the school that you could take.




    Yeah, most of my friends don't work out (yet, are still in really good shape). I don't know about finding somebody at the university. My university is about 90% commuter so most people don't tend to talk to each other throughout the day. Just go for classes and then leave. I've been trying though.

    I actually took the weight lifting class last year at my university but the class had no in-gym training. I know, hard to believe. We just learned about muscle groups and how to work those muscle groups with which excersise but overall the class was a joke because our professor didn't care. What a shame.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:38 PM GMT
    genqb said
    juliogarcia said

    I sat down with the trainer at LA Fitness and I said, I’d like to sign up but I’m a college student so I have to see what the cost are to see if I can afford it. She informed me, they can’t speak of prices and that I just need to sign up and then we could work it out. That blew my mind. When I went the next day, I spoke to a different trainer and he said the same thing!


    i'm sorry, that is unacceptable. maybe that's how they do it at LA Fitness, but at my gym they tell you exactly how much a package of personal training sessions cost. I've never even heard of such a ridiculous thing, you don't know how much you'll be paying before you sign up?? Is this an auction? Can you hire William Shatner to be your Priceline Negotiator?


    Which gym do you go to?
    I'd love a gym that would just let me know up front.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:38 PM GMT
    I don't know about down in Pembroke Pines, but my trainer up here in Delray is awesome. I found him through a smaller boutique gym. The trainers at the big box gyms never seem to care about their clients and just do the same program for everyone.

    My trainer lives in Pompano, but only trains in Boca and Delray. I could ask him if he knows any good trainers down by you. The problem you're going to have is the really good trainers have tons of certifications and experience and therefore charge more. So, if you're needing to save money, you might have to start with an entry-level trainer at one of the big clubs.

    There is an article on here about how to find a great personal trainer. That might be a good read for you.

    Good luck.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:40 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ saidSave your money and study some of the workout & nutrition tips right here at Real Jock that are free.

    BINGO!
  • MSUBioNerd

    Posts: 1813

    Aug 31, 2008 5:40 PM GMT
    In general, I avoid anything where they won't tell me the cost up front. That's a sign that either it's a scam or a cult. Reputable business will tell you what the cost is before you commit.

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    Aug 31, 2008 5:42 PM GMT
    Runninchlt saidI'd say buyer beware of gym based personal training companies. Check out the trainers' credentials because you could easily get injured. My experience with gym based personal training has not been good. I'd say buyer beware. This has been my experience, and I know several other people who have had similar experiences.

    1. High turnover rate. The trainers there were obviously NOT serious about helping people reach their goals.
    2. Automatic draft- my personal training company was affiliated with my gym, but they weren't a part of the same company so I couldn't handle the finances in one place. When I went to cancel the personal training, I wound up sending in 5 certified letters and I'd threatened to sue before the money stopped coming out of my account. I wound up paying a few thousand dollars altogether on crap service.
    3. Trainer credentials- Definitely check out certifications or degrees. Some personal training companies are extremely pompous, and try to shove their services down your throat as if they're doing you some huge favor by taking your money and then not disclosing pertinent information. Just because someone has big muscles doesn't mean they know a thing about exercise kinesiology, or how to train someone else successfully.

    Ok, I'm obviously still bitter, and I know there are personal trainers here who work out of gyms. I'm not saying that all gym based personal training is bad, and that there aren't good qualified professional trainers out there. You can find a beginner work out program and demonstrations of exercises with less headache and financial commitment online.


    I have to agree somewhat with what you're saying. When I looked around LA Fitness I saw the personal trainers (some, not all) looked like they barely cared about the client and getting them into shape. I mean, I know I need a little of a push when it comes to weight training and I'm just looking to be not too tied down to somebody that in the end, may not be all that great.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:42 PM GMT
    MSUBioNerd saidIn general, I avoid anything where they won't tell me the cost up front. That's a sign that either it's a scam or a cult. Reputable business will tell you what the cost is before you commit.

    In general? ...like, In always! ...dont sign any paper work for anything without knowing what you are getting into. ...If they have to play games, there's a reason. ...Just get your butt up and leave.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:46 PM GMT
    Caslon6000 said
    CuriousJockAZ saidSave your money and study some of the workout & nutrition tips right here at Real Jock that are free.

    BINGO!


    I think this is easier said that done. Half of me agrees that I should just suck it up and read a book and go out there on my own.

    The other half is stuck on the fact that I can barely bench a bar with 20 pounds. I never did sports but I've taken the initiative to change. I never had a mentor, a coach, or even a workout buddy. I've been on a search and I know I don't need somebody for life and ultimately I will have to train on my own. Understandable, but I'd just like some "hands on" training at first. Just a push into some routines, whats a good weight for me to start lifting, etc.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:48 PM GMT
    Caslon6000 said
    MSUBioNerd saidIn general, I avoid anything where they won't tell me the cost up front. That's a sign that either it's a scam or a cult. Reputable business will tell you what the cost is before you commit.

    In general? ...like, In always! ...dont sign any paper work for anything without knowing what you are getting into. ...If they have to play games, there's a reason. ...Just get your butt up and leave.


    Yeah, I actually went and canceled with LA Fitness. They weren't what I was looking for.
  • MSUBioNerd

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    Aug 31, 2008 5:49 PM GMT
    Well, there are a few things I'll do without knowing the cost upfront, but those are generally things where there aren't many options. Emergency medical treatment is the best example--I called an ambulance for when I needed to get my mother to the hospital without knowing what the ambulance cost would end up being. Things like that are why I used the caveat.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:51 PM GMT
    halltd saidI don't know about down in Pembroke Pines, but my trainer up here in Delray is awesome. I found him through a smaller boutique gym. The trainers at the big box gyms never seem to care about their clients and just do the same program for everyone.

    My trainer lives in Pompano, but only trains in Boca and Delray. I could ask him if he knows any good trainers down by you. The problem you're going to have is the really good trainers have tons of certifications and experience and therefore charge more. So, if you're needing to save money, you might have to start with an entry-level trainer at one of the big clubs.

    There is an article on here about how to find a great personal trainer. That might be a good read for you.

    Good luck.


    A boutique gym trainer seems more in the direction I'm going in. I actually go to school in Boca so your gym may be something not so bad of an idea. Which gym is it? And maybe an estimated cost?
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:57 PM GMT
    juliogarcia said
    Caslon6000 said
    CuriousJockAZ saidSave your money and study some of the workout & nutrition tips right here at Real Jock that are free.

    BINGO!


    I think this is easier said that done. Half of me agrees that I should just suck it up and read a book and go out there on my own.

    The other half is stuck on the fact that I can barely bench a bar with 20 pounds. I never did sports but I've taken the initiative to change. I never had a mentor, a coach, or even a workout buddy. I've been on a search and I know I don't need somebody for life and ultimately I will have to train on my own. Understandable, but I'd just like some "hands on" training at first. Just a push into some routines, whats a good weight for me to start lifting, etc.

    Have you checked out RJ's resources...exercises, videos, whole routines?

    Click on TOPICS and WORKOUT PLANS tabs at the top of the page.
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    Aug 31, 2008 5:58 PM GMT
    MSUBioNerd saidWell, there are a few things I'll do without knowing the cost upfront, but those are generally things where there aren't many options. Emergency medical treatment is the best example--I called an ambulance for when I needed to get my mother to the hospital without knowing what the ambulance cost would end up being. Things like that are why I used the caveat.

    yeah you are right...but i dont think anyone sits around and negotiates an ambulance ride!
  • Puppy80

    Posts: 451

    Aug 31, 2008 7:35 PM GMT
    I work out at a chain gym and when I signed up they talked me into getting a trainer. I'm glad I did. I knew nothing about any of the machines. My trainer is a pretty good guy, pushes me, but not beyond my abilities and we do everything in different ways. Using machines, weights, free range machines and resistance bands.

    Though every time he has me jump rope he's always impressed that I can do it backwards.
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    Aug 31, 2008 7:39 PM GMT
    Puppy80 saidI work out at a chain gym and when I signed up they talked me into getting a trainer. I'm glad I did. I knew nothing about any of the machines. My trainer is a pretty good guy, pushes me, but not beyond my abilities and we do everything in different ways. Using machines, weights, free range machines and resistance bands.

    Though every time he has me jump rope he's always impressed that I can do it backwards.


    Which gym is this?
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    Aug 31, 2008 7:44 PM GMT
    I had a really good personal trainer when i started couldn't do enough to help me on my way. He cost $60 a session

    Why don't bring it up and ask some of the other guys in your gym what they pay for personal training and who they would recommend?

    Normally people are happy to recommend their good trainer if they are any good.
  • Puppy80

    Posts: 451

    Aug 31, 2008 7:49 PM GMT
    I work out at XSport and pay 50 a session.
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    Aug 31, 2008 9:34 PM GMT
    You might want to hold out for your university's gym. When I was in college, I was able to hire a kinesiology student who did personal training for credits (or for a course or something). Unlike professional trainers, who try to get you dependent on them, he was very willing to teach me how to lift on my own, and IIRC it was only $120/month, far less than the usual $50/hr. I didn't know anything about form before him.
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    Aug 31, 2008 9:46 PM GMT
    juliogarcia saidA boutique gym trainer seems more in the direction I'm going in. I actually go to school in Boca so your gym may be something not so bad of an idea. Which gym is it? And maybe an estimated cost?


    In Boca, he trains at the Boca Athletic Club which recently changed into a Lifetime Fitness club. www.lifetimefitness.com/bocaraton/

    I'm not sure if you can hire him and not pay for a membership there (because it's quite pricey). But, the gym he trains at in Delray is a lot cheaper. If you want, let me know and I can get you his phone number. Of all the trainers I've seen in this area, he's one of the best and gets results. I've lost over 40 pounds since February using him