Last Saturday I visited Celebrity Fitness in Subang Parade and I was truly taken a back by one of the comments the staff made to me. You see, a friend of mine was interested in turbulence training but was not quite sure how to go about it. So I downloaded one of the turbulence training workouts from the net and printed it out. We met up in the gym so I could show her and her cousin how everything works. Just as an FYI, all 3 of us have a membership with Celebrity Fitness.
Anyway, while I was showing this friend of mine the exercises, I noticed one of the PTs giving me “the look”. I just ignored and continued showing my friend the exercises. Shortly after that, the front counter staff came up to me and said:
Counter Staff: Sir, I am sorry but you are not allowed to give personal training sessions in our gyms. We do not allow external trainers to use our facilities for personal training.
Rajan: But I am not giving personal training sessions. I am just showing my friends here how to do some exercises. We are all members.
Counter Staff: Yes, but my manager said you are giving personal training sessions and you have to stop.
Rajan: Is it wrong for one member to show another member how to exercise?
Counter Staff: No, but you have a progress sheet over there which is what personal trainers use. I saw you writing down notes on it and my manage says you can’t do that. You have to stop.
Rajan: I printed this from the internet and just jotted down some notes for my friends. If you don’t believe me, you can google it yourself and see.
Counter Staff: Yes, that’s exactly my point. You are not allowed to print out and use it in here.
Rajan: So you are telling me that I am not allowed to surf the internet, print out a routine and then perform it in your gym.
Friend #1: Are you saying that it is wrong for me to read a magazine and follow the tips your gym.
Friend #2: So you are basically telling us that we are not allowed to read up on information about fitness, and even if we do, we can’t use that information in your gym.
Counter Staff: But you are not allowed to perform personal training sessions here. You are not allowed to write notes and train people.
Rajan: I told you once, and I will tell you again. We are all members here and we are friends. We downloaded this from the internet and we are just sharing this information with each other. Is it wrong to do that? Are we not allowed to talk to each other in your gym? Are not allowed to look for informtion on fitness?
Counter Staff: What is it exactly that you printed out. It looks like you designed the program.
Rajan: No I did not design this program, I told you I downloaded it. But even if I did, is it wrong to show a friend something I know. Are we not allowed to share our knowledge on fitness with each other.
Counter Staff: But you are not allowed to give personal training sessions and it really looks like you are giving personal training sessions.
Rajan: But I am not, I am just showing a friend this workout which we downloaded from the net. I think we have explained this enough.
Counter Staff: Let me show my manager your print out and let her decide if its OK or not.
So this guy took our print out and went to see his Manager. While he was gone, we were discussing with each other how stupid the guys comments were. In my head, I was wondering what to say if he came back and told me that it was not allowed.
Finally after a couple of minutes, he came back and apologized and told us we can proceed.
Now, I totally understand him suspecting me of giving personal training sessions, but the conversation should have ended when I told him I downloaded it from the net. His comment on we are not allowed to print it out and use it was just wrong. I also totally understand that gyms are out there to make money. After all it is a business and yes, they deserve to earn profits. But don’t-lah be so kiasu. My guess is, it was the PT who was giving me the look when we started that complained to someone.
Just for your info, the gyms charge members RM 130 per Personal Training session (which is 1 hour) and the Personal Trainer themselves only walks away with RM 35 and the gym makes RM 90… almost 3 times the amount. That is just a riddiculous amount of profit that the gym makes. And lots of PTs don’t even have a basic salary, which means they are not a liability to the gym. Truly a case of the pimp and the prostitute, where the pimp makes far more money for doing nothing.
Anyway, please do share your thoughts on the dialogue above and look forward to hearing your comments.