T Nation

How to Save a Gym?

I have finally had the privilege to train at a dedicated, hardcore gym. The place has everything. Three power racks, a monolift, competition benches, KBs, reverse hyper, GHR, boards, bands, chains, a BFR, DL platform, safety squat bar, a fat bar, and all the other assorted goodies you’d need to get really fucking strong. No sooner had I trained there for a few days, when the owner (a national level powerlifter) comes up to me and tells me that the place might have to close.

Basically, the City of Pittsburgh, in its infinite wisdom and intent to expand and attract businesses, is giving him all kinds of grief over the fire protection system in the building. The main problem being, the lack of a sprinkler system. The guy that owns the place has indicated that it would be financially impossible for him to install such a system. An alternative would be to spray the ceiling with a fire-protective coating. That is also prohibitively expensive and labor-intensive.

This really pisses me off, for mostly selfish reasons, but I feel bad for the owner, too. Basically, I need a good way to raise money, other than assembling a rag-tag dodgeball squad and heading to Vegas. It’s not Globo Gym vs. Average Joes, but I need some ideas that people will rally behind so we can save this place.

I’m not from Pittsburgh, but I am originally from the Boston area, and there is one thing I know about people in northern cities…they know how to help each other out.

Put the word out to everybody in the gym. I guarantee you that somebody knows somebody who knows somebody that can help you guys out. There have gotta be enough union guys that go to your gym that one of them has a brother-in-law, or some relation, who can help you guys get into compliance on the cheap.

Either that, or get the local fire-fighters involved. Get your gym owner to offer discounted memberships to the FD guys who can help out and get a system installed.
Good luck, and I hope your place stays open. Sounds like a great gym.