My letter to the LA Fitness CEO - Louis Welch says it all.
Hello Mr. Welch,
I am contacting you today because I have been a member of LA Fitness in Beverly Hills for about 6 months. In that time I have enjoyed my time going to the club and regularly visit it about 5 days a week for about 2 hours a day.
To cut to the chase, today I cancelled my membership. The reason is, because a little over week ago a member, was using the elliptical machine next to me. Out of the side of my eye, I noticed he kept leaning forward, and I would hear a hocking noise through my head phones. This was about every 30 seconds or so.
I tried not to look over thinking he just had a cold or whatever. But it quickly became obvious that he was spitting into a towel he had laid across and into the cup holder on the machine. I was shocked. It was gross. All the machines were full on that first day so I kept up my routine, hoping one would open up. Before one did, I noticed he took a second towel he had draped across the monitor and switched it with the spit soaked one. (Putting the spit one onto the monitor.) (At least there is no flu going around... right?) Finally a machine opened up and I switched to it to get away from the guy.
A couple of days later, I'm working out on the same row of machines, and several are open, yet this guy now picks the one right next to me and starts up again. Coincidence or not, I just go there to work out and want no trouble with anyone. So I move.
Today, I was working out again on the same row and again several machines are open around me, and I hear someone whistling from beside and behind me. I don't pay it any mind then I see a towel go down over the cup holder and the guy then comes around to the front of the machine and hangs a towel on the monitor, still whistling. I look over at him, he looks at me and he hocks a wad of spit into the towel.
I stopped and asked him what he was doing? He said what? I said did you just spit onto the machine? He said so what if I did its none of your business and mind your own business. I told him it was and is my business. I work out on these machines and its gross and nasty. Not to mention everyone is trying not to get sick. And I said do not do it again. Again he said who are you to tell me what to do. That's when I said lets go see the manager and see if he's ok with your routine of spitting onto the equipment.
I went up and found GM Mr. Crosby. A very nice gentleman. He was appalled by what I told him and we went looking to find the member. The member had left the area. When we came back up to the front the member was now talking with PTD Mrs. Alex Valero. I told Mr. Crosby that this was the person. The member admitted to what he was doing and again said over and over in an aggressive manner that it was none of my business. He was not apologetic; in fact he said that he was not scared of me and that he would break me in two. At which point I did say well do it then. I had every right to stand up for myself and will always stand up against bullies. He did not break me in two.
I then walked away with Mr. Crosby and he thanked me very much for being there and bringing this disgusting event to his attention. I told him that I did not want to be in a gym with this person again. And no one should spit on the equipment or threaten members. I then went back to work out.
To my surprise, Mrs. Valero and OM Mrs. Ruta came up to me when I was back on the machine, and I thought they were going to apologize and maybe thank me for taking the steps that I did, as Mr. Crosby had. Instead they told me the member was going to simply be given a warning. And that I was going to be given a warning too.
I asked for what? Mrs. Valero said I was aggressive. I stated that if I was going to be given a warning then I was going to cancel my membership immediately. When we walked back up front Mrs. Valero now said I said that I was going to kick the member's a**. I was with Mr. Crosby the entire time. I asked Mr. Crosby if I had said that, and he said no I had not said that. Mrs. Ruta then let me know that I should have told them sooner that the member was spitting. Really nice.
The fact that a member spits on the equipment and then found it entertaining to get up next to me on several occasions like a bullying stalker should be of great concern to Mrs. Valero and Mrs. Ruta.
LA Fitness should not be a High School. Mrs. Valero however, since I have been a member, is seemingly unable to even answer a simple "Hi" or "Good morning"... so much so that I gave up even saying it to her. Because she'd look you straight in the face after hearing a "Good morning" and act is if you weren't even there. That aside, her handling of this event, should be troubling for LA Fitness as it was for me. I guess she was friends with the human sprinkler.
If you like people spitting on your work out machines, well this is the place for you!
Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend
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