T Nation

Gym Contract

Can anyone give me some advice on the best way to get out of a gym contract? I really hate to be dishonest, but my gym has become overcrowded. It feels like I am working out at a Shoe Carnival the way the gym staff is always trying to sell more memberships. Truthfully, I feel like I have been cheated out of some good workouts, especially when you are trying to squeze out one last rep and some JackA** come over the load speaker and offers free t-shirts to anyone that can give him the name and number of someone that is interestes in joining. I have one that I would like to switch to that is more my flavor. Any advice would help. Thanks - Alpha

hey, i worked at a bank for many years and people would put stop payments on the direct-withdrawal, as a temporary measure. (although, some gyms would catch on and withdraw the amount minus 1(one cent) less, tricking the automated computer into withdrawing the amount less one penny).

i will advise you to seek legal advice. you have a valid point if the gym is OVER selling members, as they never antisipate the majority of members coming at once.

jaystyles

You signed a contract. Stopping the bank draft would be a breach of that contract and they could send you to collections. You usually need to show that you have moved, are disabled, or dead. Unfortunately contracts like this are the only way gyms can make decent money because most people quit regardless of the progress they make.

Sounds like the Bally’s I used to work at.

I don’t believe in lying to get out of a contract. I think that you can get what you want by meeting the problem head on.

I would simply be honest and up front about it. Walk into the managers office and tell him that the gym has changed, and because of all of the constant promotion and other distractions you are not coming back and you are not paying.

When the gym manager leans on you about your contract tell him that when you signed up it was a different place. You can also inform him that if he trys to collect on the contract that you signed you are not only going to sue him personally (for giving you false information) but you are going to write a letter to the local newspaper and report all of the problems that you had with his gym. You are also going to report the gym to the Attorney Generals office for misrepresentation!

Most managers know that getting a bad reputation is something that they can’t afford. Also, most places do not want a tussel with the Attorney Generals office.

Next time train a few weeks at a place before signing a long term contract!

I was in a contract that I thought I couldn’t get out of. They kept telling me there was some ridiculous withdrawl fee of almost $400.00 dollars! Paying the fee would immediately terminate your membership at the end of the current month. However, they had a clause buried in the fine print that allowed you to cancel with no penalties, you just had to notify them in writing giving a full month notice.

Maybe see if there is hidden clause that will let you out? People do get transfered, move, die, whatever so it seems like there must be some sort of loophole you could find.

ice, ZEB. Suing the gym manager personally is ridiculous. Nobody entered into a contract with HIM! Suing the gym manager in this instance is a great way to get yourself sued for malicious prosecution. As for the AG’s office, I doubt that they would waste their time on this.

What kind of termination language is contained in the contract? Many times there is language allowing you to cancel your membership on 30 days notice. Until I know what your contract says, I can’t offer you much help.

You know anyone who lives out of town? My friend is moving so it will be about a 45 minute drive just to workout but it isnt far enough to meet the 50 mile distance they have for dropping contract… so he put in a change of address to get his mail sent to a buddy out of town for a few days and will change it back, now he has proof that he is out of range for this gym.

he may not be honest but sometimes shit just is unreasonable trying to get a buck out of you.

See if they will let you sell (or transfer) your membership to somebody else. I actually did that once with a gym contract, no sweat whatsoever!

TJN713,

I stated that “you tell him you are going to sue him” as in bluff!

Also, the AG’s office will indeed entertain any and all complaints regarding that type of business. They investigate to look for patterns regarding the operation.

“Malicious Prosecution” Haha. You can sue anyone for anything my friend. I hope you are not a lawyer…(eye roll).

i hear arson is a pretty good way to get out of gym contracts.

well, one thing that might be in your contract is something regarding services rendered to you as in being a satisfied customer. if a willing manager sees how your workouts are negatively affected by the overcrowding, he/she may refund and rescind your contract. however, i really doubt that is likely. find out how contracts are voided in the fine print (usually its just moving away) and see if you can find something that works with your case. otherwise, and its terrible to say this, but be a complete jackass in the gym - hoard the weights you need, spend the 15 minutes you need on the bench even if busy, work-in with others so you can do your workout no matter what. if other people get the message, they’ll steer clear of you while your there.

Interesting…

I haven’t joined a proper gym yet.

How can I prevent myself getting in a situation like this guy?

ZEB: You said nothing about bluffing:

“When the gym manager leans on you about your contract tell him that when you signed up it was a different place. You can also inform him that if he trys to collect on the contract that you signed you are not only going to sue him personally (for giving you false information) but you are going to write a letter to the local newspaper and report all of the problems that you had with his gym. You are also going to report the gym to the Attorney Generals office for misrepresentation!”

Sure you can sue anybody. Doesn’t mean they can’t sue you for malicious prosecution when you are found to have filed a bogus claim.

As for the AG’s office, explain to me what this gym did that would warrant a criminal investigation. It’s too loud, crowded, and pushy. Nothing there that the government will care about.

Zeb, your ignorance is showing. Again.

TJN713,

Did I state “You should sue him?” No, I stated “tell him you are going to sue him.” Hence the bluff. You have to try to keep up around here my friend.

Don’t know what state you are from but in most states there is no civil “malicious prosecution” to my knowledge. If someone decides to sue you for whatever reason, you have got to go to the bother and expense of defending yourself. Now they can counter sue you if it is found that you have a frivolous lawsuit. However, that is very difficult to prove. as you should (but don’t for some reason) know.

Now let me clear up a few things about a typical AG’s office. They can approach an investigation two different ways: civilly and criminally. “Explain to me what this gym did that would warrant a criminal investigation.” I never stated that it was a criminal complaint did I? Again, you didn’t read the post very carefully. Before commenting you need to carefully read a post…or a brief. As you should know, but do not.

An AG’s office can pursue civil remedies and even act as an intermediary between two parties at odds regarding a business deal. The “loud croweded, pushy” and general deplorable conditions can be a point of negotiations for AlphaMale656. Perhaps if he did register a complaint he would not in fact get a full refund, but he may get a partial refund. Then again the mere threat of reporting this particular company may be all of the action that need take place for him to get satisfaction. You and I do not know how many times in the past that this company may have been reported. A good lawyer would know this. Again…you don’t.

By the way, I only read after I wrote my comment, “I hope you are not a lawyer,” that you are in fact a lawyer. Let me give you just one piece of advice and I mean this in all sincerity: Spend less time trolling the fitness forums and more time hitting the law books. I have never read so many uninformed comments from a lawyer in my life! And I have known many of them.