T Nation

Gold's Gym or American Family Fitness?


I need a part time job, and I think I would like to work at a gym. I train at home and have never set foot in a commercial gym, so aside from the curls in the squat rack stories I've read here, I have no idea what to expect.

So who has worked or trained at either of these places, and what was your impression of the company and the staff?


If you're a trainer just go wherever you think you can get enough clients. If you're just gonna be cleaning the bathrooms and re-racking weights then go look at the gym and see which one you like better. I've never heard of American Family Fitness but it sounds like a place that would have programs tailored to fat children who need to lose weight or die. I'd probably go with Golds Gym.


I'm not a personal trainer, but have been considering it. As I said I don't know much about the atmosphere so I figure I'll start out re-racking the weights and if I don't loathe the place after a month I'll go get certified.


I can only comment on the couple of Gold's Gyms I've been to.

The customer service people and trainers are friendly and helpful, and usually they stay out of your business while you're training. The only unsolicited advice I received was a recommendation to do leg extensions instead of the box pistol squats I was doing.

Quality and quantity of equipment varies greatly from gym to gym, mainly because some Gold's are franchises and some are corporate. Corporate Gold's tend to have the nicer stuff. One Gold's I went to has a cardio room that's also a full size theater where people watch movies while they leisurely bike, walk and elipt(?).

You get a mixed bag in regard to the members. There's lots of soccer moms and cardio bunnies, a bunch of lightbulbs benching 3x week, and a few huge and serious lifters sprinkled in.

As long as you put your blinders on and do what you came to do, they're good enough for training.


A janitor and a CEO have two totally different perceptions of the same corner office.

Re-racking weights and mopping the steam room will not give you an idea of what it would be like to work as a trainer instead.