Hello, new poster here but my most recent experience with Golds gyms in the KC area has me ready to tell everyone serious about lifting that they are going the way of Bally’s. If you ever wanted neon and spandex back…Golds is headed toward becoming a meat market.
If this has been discussed in past…sorry. Here is my letter of cancelation I just sent today. If I get any kind of response…I’ll post a follow up.
Any chance T-Nation has looked into this already?
6501 South Frontage Rd.
Merriam, KS 66202
To Whom It May Concern:
I am canceling my gym membership of 4 years. Please stop the automatic withdrawals immediately and remove my information from your membership databases.
It has been brought to my attention by TWO separate Golds gyms in the Kansas City area that power lifting is not supported. I have been deadlifting and squatting since high school and have even earned a degree in Exercise Science, yet I have been told by both gyms that I am lifting incorrectly and that none of their other members lift that way.
I turn 40 years old this year. My lifting experience has spanned 25 years and included time as a bodybuilder, college rower, and now as a Highland Games competitor. In that time I have studied lifting techniques from all schools of thought?power lifting, hypertrophy, Olympic lifting, rehab?and yet it seems that I am not lifting according to the new Gold?s standard of ??please only use the machines and don?t get sweaty?.
Today, I was at the Westport gym finishing my second set of deadlifts with 470lbs. My goal is to pull 600lbs on my 40th birthday and I just raised my max deadlift to 525lbs a month ago. I was well on my way to that goal, but now I find that Golds will not support me in my effort for strength and fitness. A lady who introduced herself as ?mother of the owner? asked me if I was done. I explained that I had two more sets to do and she responded??If you can?t put that weight down any softer you are done now.? She then proceeded to tell me that many other lifters lift more than that and don?t put the weights down that hard. I have NEVER seen another lifter pull what I am pulling in either of the Golds I have attended in four years. I know for a fact that anyone attempting to put over 400 pounds down on the ground ?slowly? will destroy their back and will most likely never lift again. Her comments are not only extremely rude, they are very dangerous.
In a previous incident in the Westport gym I was doing partial deadlifts off the rack with 650lbs. On my second set I was told that the gym had a new manager (from the northland) who said that I was going to scare off a client he was trying to sign up.
My lifting at the Westport gym had increased in the last two months because I was told that they were NOT like the northland gym. They did not have a daycare to worry about and their lunch time was light. In fact, I set my last personal record (PR) of 525 there. However, now I find that the same attitude against power lifting has contaminated that gym as it has in the northland gym.
I stopped lifting at the Vivion Rd Gym because I was told the following in one day?.
-You are scaring off the families (by a friend of the manager)
-You are making it hard to sign up the 65 year old ladies ( by an employee at counter)
-I have lifted that and never made any noise (by the manager, and I was pulling 450 for reps)
Anytime I tried to discuss what was happening, I got a variety of reasons why I was being told this?one even included that I was yelling, which I have never done. The reasons were grunting too loud/making too much noise, banging the weights too much, someone just complained, not the way we do it, etc. This was despite having adjusted my lifting, stopped wearing my headset, and attempted to make my pre-lift psych up muttered instead of spoken. The story changed so much every time that I finally got the hint?.I was not allowed to power lift at Golds. Golds does not want any serious lifters. Regardless of the numerous people in both gyms that have complimented me on my lifts or said that it was motivating to see someone lifting heavy.
I have always been a courteous lifter. Not once have I ever left plates on a bar or on a sled. Any weights that I take to use always end up back on the rack (including weights already there). I have spotted other lifters, I have helped other lifters. I always wait my turn and have never taken anyone else?s weights. The opposite of which has happened to me countless times, but I continue to go out of my way to make lifting a good experience for others. It is too bad Golds customers will never see me or my money again because what you are getting is all the slackers and the posers that don?t care about leaving sweaty benches, weights all over, and standing in front of mirrors blocking weight racks from other users.
This letter will be posted to a variety of forums that I participate in and will be sent to my entire contact list.
Thank you for your time, and again please cancel my membership as of my call today (04/14/09) and stop the automatic withdrawals.