To cancel your La Fitness Pro Results personal training simply write a letter to the Better Business Bureau, and wait. Having an attorney send a letter to their corporate office also helps.
These are almost always guaranteed to work if your problems are legitimately concerning (and referencing) trainer no shows, being switched trainers numerous time, harassment, stolen sessions, or misrepresentation at the point of sale (the time of signing up), such as being told you can cancel your contract at any time with no penalty or not being told effectively and directly that your contract will automatically convert to a month to month program upon completion, both of which I'll discuss next.
Very often La Fitness Pro Results sales representative will mislead you by telling you that you may cancel your personal training contract at any time with no penalty, which is completely false, (in some states) such cancellation usually requires a buy-out fee/penalty of 50% of the remaining balance and can total many hundreds of dollars. Some are in excess of a thousand.
Also La Fitness Pro Results sales representative will mislead you about your contract automatically renewing. One of their 'gimmicks' in this regard is to use 'fast talk' and refer to this as your "Rate for Life Guarantee", when in effect all of their personal training contracts are set to automatically renew after their initial term (month to month).
In April 2008 (or approximate to that time) La Fitness mysteriously cancelled numerous contracts (and stopped billing) those which had entered automatic renewal, in which members checking and credit cards accounts were being billed for MANY months after their initial term, some for over a year, with payments ranging $100-$400 monthly. These contracts (payments/drafts) were mysteriously cancelled yet to my knowledge none of the funds were ever returned to the clients. This was done company wide, and was not mentioned to upper management or club management. This was a one time thing.
They did not cancel all auto-new contracts. It appears they only cancelled those who had been in auto renew for quite some time, as they let many in auto-renew at that time continue, and they still continue to automatically renew contracts on a daily basis.
It may also be possible they've decided to let all contracts auto-renew, yet set a pre-determined amount of time they would allow such contracts to continue to be billed (for example an additional 12 months), then cancel future drafts at such a pre-set time.
It was suggested to the owners of the company and their corporate brass to provide a list of ALL clients not using their personal training. This was suggested as a way of increasing customer service. This was rejected. Why? They feared that if 'non using clients' (but who were still being billed/drafted) were contacted, they would immediately become aware they were still being drafted for a contract they thought was completed and not using, resulting in people contacting their banks in order to stop electronic billing, and this could cost the company millions!
As a result, the only list provide to the club is a much shorter (safe) list of members whose accounts were active recently, but who have not used their personal training in the past 30 days. Anyone outside of that time frame is not put on that list due to the reasons I just explained.
I've been told directly by the owner and "La Fitness Top Brass" their fear is having an attorney/attorney general shut down their ability to auto-renew contracts which would cost the company millions of dollars yearly.
Also their clients have had thousands upon thousands of sessions stolen by trainers, resulting in trainers fraudulently getting paid at the loss of sessions to the clients, very often with neither the client nor La Fitness even being made aware, and sessions never being restored. La Fitness is aware of the loopholes which allow their clients sessions to be stolen, but have done little to correct the problem due to cost and inconvenience. Such solutions could include a finger print system, or a signature verification system, or simply locking down accounts which are not being used.
Also all La Fitness gym members need to be made aware that their billing information (while safely hidden) has the potential to used by the personal training department to bill ongoing services for personal training without the main members knowledge/authorized signature. This has also happened numerous times, to unwitting spouses and often by underage children, using their parents accounts even with the sales representative knowledge the child is underage and doesn't have their parents approval. Sales representative have also fraudulently and intentionally charged accounts of members for personal training services without the members' knowledge.
If you have had problems in these areas above, you may choose to contact an attorney, the Better Business Bureau and your State Attorney General. The owner of the company is Louis Welch (**) The owner's personal 'right hand person' is **. The head of human resources is **. ** heads the legal department.
YONKERS, NEW YORK -- I got duped into signing a crazy long and expensive personal training contract that was for half the amount of time that I was told! It is impossible to get a hold of anybody in charge and your complaints and requests are repeatedly ignored. SO unprofessional, dirty facility, rude front desk staff. All around horror story - stay away!!!
LA HABRA, CALIFORNIA -- After reading all these complaints, I know I am not the only one going through this. My husband signed me up for a years worth of personal training (pro-results) and 1 year membership to LA Fitness. It was a surprise but I found out about it & wanted to ask questions about what he signed me up for. My husband told me he signed me up for an hour a week with a personal trainer. When I spoke to "**" manager of the P.T.'s she said they do 1/2 hour of training & 1/2 hour of cooling down. So really all you get is 1/2 hour.
So on my 1st day I got there early. (Keeping in mind my husband signed me up & I didn't get a tour or any information at all.) They told me to start on a machine. I have never been to a gym in my life, I was very overwhelmed!
I started with my trainer, very quiet & not much information. She was asking me what types of exercises I wanted to do, again, I have never been to a gym before. She is the trainer, shouldn't she be telling me what to do?? I changed trainers after her & got a really good one. She was my trainer for about 3 1/2 months. If she ever had to cancel on me, she would call me & I also had her cell phone # if I needed to contact her. I showed up to my appt with her in May & was told she quit! No one from the gym called me to let me know or to set me up with anyone else.
I got a new trainer who was also really good until she double booked me! I had a standing appt with her on Wednesdays at 9 am. I show up on 5/23 at 8:45 am and workout for 15 mins. Go up to the counter & myself and another client show up. She asks me if I would mind coming back later. I told her that my schedule is pretty busy (2 kids and the end of school) but I could come back the next day. I show up the next day & she doesn't show up! Another trainer calls her cell phone & she doesn't answer.
I trained with the other trainer & he was OK. I told him to have my regular trainer call me. She called the next day & apologized. The last straw was on July 3rd. My trainer had been on vacation for 2 weeks so we scheduled an appt for 7/3 at 9 am, since she wasn't sure if she would be working for my normal Wednesday appt on 7/4. I get to the gym at 8:45 work out until 9 & another no show! I was mad. This is now the 3rd time of the same trainer not show up. I had only had her for a trainer for 2 months & already had 3 no shows.
I then came home & called the gym to contact corporate. They told me that corporate would respond within 2 hours. Of course, they never respond. I figured with July 4th they were closed. Called the gym 1st thing on Thursday morning & spoke the personal trainer manager. (**) She listened to what I had to say & proceeded to tell me that my trainer went on another vacation, but took care of all her appointments. I guess she never put my appointment in the computer, so she didn't remember she had set one up on that day. ** had told me she had a meeting with the V.P. that afternoon & would bring up the situation with him & would call me as soon as she was done. No calls!
Surprise! I called her cell phone on Friday 7/6 & left a message for her to call me. No calls! So finally on Tuesday I found a number to corporate (very hard to find any corporate phone #'s) I spoke to **. I told her all I wanted was to cancel without paying the 50% charge since I don't feel I should have to pay that. She was going to call the club & then call me back when she resolved the issue. Never heard back from her. Called & spoke to ** on 7/10. Very rude, didn't want to listen to me, & told me that I was refusing service since he wanted to set me up with a 4th trainer. I told him that I just wanted to cancel.
I don't think I was being unreasonable since I had already paid them $96 a month for my training & didn't receive all of my sessions. I didn't even want any money back. I asked to speak with his manager, he said he didn't have one. Hard to believe since every company has some sort of boss. Went on for about 5 minutes of me asking for someone higher than him. Finally got me to Orlando, he was somewhat nicer, but still telling me I can't cancel without paying th 50% charge. He did suspend my account for a month (supposedly without charge, we will see when I get my statement) & offered to set me up with a trainer at a different store.
I am not happy. Who can I speak to, to cancel my membership! This is not acceptable! To have 4 no shows in 5 months! I am a busy person & don't have time to show up & not have my trainer show up. If anyone has any advice as to where to cancel or speak to someone about this, please let me know!
WINTER PARK, FLORIDA -- Honestly, the gym fee is reasonable, and the staff has been friendly and professional. However, I learned a pretty important (and expensive) lesson when it came to signing a contract for the personal training. First, the "pitch" was a pretty high-pressure situation (more on this later). When I expressed my financial reservations, I was told "Don't worry about it. Just let me know if it becomes a problem, and we'll figure something out." I wish I had gotten that in writing.
When the finances became a problem, I found out I was on the hook for 50% of the year's fees for canceling. Technically, this was all in fine print on the contract. I admit I should have been more careful. But, this information was not clearly conveyed during the signing, which by the way took place after an intense "trial" workout. To say I was in the right state of mind to make a major financial decision would be a lie.
Management handled my concerns professionally and assured me that the sales staff would make contract obligations clearer in the future, but obviously that doesn't do much to help me out. Ultimately, I can't fault the local branch much, and I will continue to use the basic gym membership, as it is affordable and nearby.
However, I feel that the L. A. Fitness business policies would best be described as predatory. By this I mean the "pitch" for personal training is, as mentioned previously, a high-pressure situation. This is not the fault of the individual salesperson, per se. The staff clearly follows a scientific approach to sales that involves gathering information about the client's motivations and all their possible excuses and uses this information after the trial workout to convince the client that they need to hire a personal trainer. The contract itself is designed to screw anyone who changes their mind or later finds out that they can't afford it.
The lessons here: A) Do not sign a contract unless you KNOW that it fits safely within your budget. B) Do not sign a contract unless you KNOW that you need a trainer to help you keep fit. If you do sign a contract, and later realize that it just wasn't meant to be, LA Fitness will get your money, and they will not apologize for it.
CASA GRANDE, ARIZONA -- I decided to get a membership at the LA Fitness in Casa Grande, Arizona and their management is a joke. I'm 19 years old and went in there to get a membership and paid $99 activation + first and last month's deposit at $29.99/month. About $160. Only 3 days later the trainer I was set up with finally convinced me to get the training sessions at $25/session after texting me by getting my phone number off of my personal information. Not only was he (**) hitting on me and asking how many piercings I had, he said I had only one day left to get the training sessions at $25/session and I would have to either call him with my cc number or text it to him.
This seemed unnecessary to me, since my number was already on file. I told him I wouldn't have money in my account until the next day. After my complimentary training session he asked to see my card, he pulled out a blank sheet of paper and continued to write my entire cc number down, with expiration date and security code, and PUT IT IN HIS POCKET! When he texted me 2 days later asking when my direct deposit would go in, I told him it wouldn't matter because that I cancelled my card because of him writing my CC number down.
When I called **, the manager, he said ** had told him about the situation and he would never do it again. Well I work in a hotel and if anyone ever did that that would be fired on the spot. I called Corporate twice and two different people said sorry it was past my 3 days so I couldn't get a refund. Even though trainers they hired are scumbags. He was clearly trying to do something with my CC because he felt the need to ask when I would get my direct deposit in. LA Fitness is only about sales, not about making customers happy. Try another gym, DO NOT GO HERE!!!
KATY, TEXAS -- Everyone who pays by credit card at LA Fitness should read this review. Warning! If you sign your name on a credit card authorization device at LA Fitness, you may learn later that your signature was transferred electronically to a 12 month services contract of which you had absolutely no knowledge.
My son signed up for a special college student summer membership (3 months). Prepaid, no problem. He decided to hire a personal trainer for this time period as well, was quoted a fee $xxx per month and he was told this would be billed monthly. He signed a credit card authorization device for automatic payment and enjoyed his summer session at LA Fitness.
Come September, LA Fitness made another automatic charge against his credit card. He inquired and was told that he had signed a 12 month contract for the personal trainer. They emailed him a copy of this contract which had his non-legible signature that had obviously been obtained from the credit card authorization device. La fitness never told him he was signing this contract. They never presented him a copy before or after he signed up for the monthly trainer.
He never verbally agreed to this commitment as he was never aware of it not to mention that he had just prepaid for three months of club membership because he was returning to college in a different city after his summer at home. He told the local LA Fitness manager this story and they said he was obligated to keep paying and he could call the head office to resolve. He tried to call several times, sent a registered letter and never heard back.
He initiated a dispute of this charge with his credit card company. And fortunately his credit card company was able to contact the local manager and they agreed to waive the buyout of this contract... No more charges. For this I am grateful the local manager eventually did the right thing. Be aware that your credit card authorization signature may be used without your knowledge for purposes that you do not intend.
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA -- When I first walked into LA Fitness to find out about prices (because the information is not online and they won't give it to you over the phone-wonder why), the “weekend manager” sat me down and went over some basic prices. After he was finished he asked me “So how would you like to pay?” Reminder: I only went in to compare prices, and I had told him that. He was so pushy about getting me to join, I finally gave in. But that was NOT the worst of my experience with LA Fitness.
I signed up for my free personal training session - which went really well - until I was basically forced to go over fees for training sessions. I decided to try a couple out, handed over my credit card and signed for what I believed to be was that fee. Little did I know that what I was signing was basically my life away! After a few sessions I decided I no longer needed training, I went to talk to the personal trainer manager about it and he informed me I had signed a YEAR CONTRACT! I about had an anxiety attack! I asked him when I did that, because no one put a contract in front of me to sign, or gave me any copies of this so called contract.
Apparently when I signed for my credit card fee, I was also signing a contract. He showed me my electronic signature on a contact that I know I would have NEVER signed if I had seen it. I was so furious! I called the corporate office and they refused to talk to me. My mom even tried calling both the La Cienega location to talk to them about it, and they hung up on her! This whole process has been the worst experience I've had to deal with-with a gym - and I would not recommend signing any “credit card” fees with LA Fitness, you might be signing a contract!
CAPE CORAL, FLORIDA -- I was a personal trainer at LA Fitness for over a year. There was some new blood coming into its own in upper management and looking for a way to make a name for themselves. After giving all I could to make a living there I was wrongly accused of stealing training sessions. I and many others with this company used a simple practice for getting paid. When someone ran out of the sessions that they were paying for, we would train them for free on that day and charge them at a later date... Most don't know or care as long as they can train when they want to. This goes on all the time, as a matter of fact I'm sure all the trainers do it every day all over the country.
I learned how to do this from one of the other trainers at the gym. So as it come to pass, once this new person took over and the economy took a dive, the co. started doing research and found out what was going on. In their infinite wisdom they decided to give me the ax... I still don't know why I was singled out, maybe it's because I wouldn't do all of the things they wanted me to do. (Rob people blind.)
Well anyway, they took my last paycheck, and fed me crap about refunding sessions and taking it out of my pay. Needless to say I'm not very pleased about how it was handled, and would like nothing more than to warn anyone who thinks this is a good place to work, or even be a member of, be very careful. This place is full of crooks, ex-cons, and people who do not care about anything other than money. Like I said before once they got you you're theirs.... BE FOREWARNED THIS PLACE SUCKS.. ALL THEY WANT IS YOUR MONEY!!!!!!!
MESA, ARIZONA -- I joined LA Fitness back in 2007 with my husband. I had been having heart problems since the year prior and as a result, I had stopped exercising and over the year had lost my strength. So, we decided to set up our free consultation with a personal trainer. I told him I was having heart issues and that I needed him to start off easy with me. He agreed, so we signed the contract. We soon found he did not care at all about customers with special needs.
We went over the booklet he gave us (to keep track of workouts), did a weigh in, BMI, etc etc... At this point he was polite. He gave us a run down on what we could expect from our workouts, and it sounded like a good start for me. Just walking on the treadmill brought my heart rate to 140-150. Our first session went well.
The next one was to focus on the lower body. So we went right into the workout. There came a point when I told the trainer that I couldn't do much more that day. He laughed it off and went on. Not to long after, my legs refused to continue and I fell on the ground. I tried to get up a few times, but I couldn't! He said he understood and would take it easy on me! I told him I needed to stop but he ignored me. So there I was, sitting on the gym floor, unable to get up and feeling thoroughly humiliated.
I don't remember how long I sat there before. (With my husband's help) I was able to get up and to a bench. I was aware of the people who were watching and could get out fast enough. With wobbly, weak legs, we then had to walk home. It took about a week before I could walk without shaking and falling. The next week, we went to see him again. This session was the arms. He did the same thing again!
This time he laughed at me when I said my arms were too tired to lift the weight again. He said to keep going till we finished that set. OK only 10 reps left. Not to bad, right? With 5 reps to go, I could not lift the bar at all. My trainer lifted it and had me "hold on to" the bar till finished. Again I felt humiliated by him.
I weight lifted before I started having health issues, and the first rule I was ever taught was to know when to STOP! That's how injuries happen... Besides the trainer who thought my condition was amusing, the gym was nice. I will never be going there again.
CALIFORNIA -- Having confronted LA Fitness Center Corporate office and the Reps at the Torrance office for the 2nd time, we came to a conclusion. We feel that everyone should be warned if they think of joining LA Fitness Center. First off, be prepared to bargain with them on membership cost when you decide to become a member. It is like going to a car dealer and buying a car - the old way. If you don't know how to bargain, you will end up paying twice as much as the guy that knows how.
Next, be prepared to sign a 3 or 4-page contract with all sorts of hidden clauses/fine-prints that will nail you for sure. Don't trust their Reps, they will tell you what you want to hear, and at the end of the day when you want to stop for whatever reason they will tell you that you signed the contract and so you are 'screwed'.
So, what should you do if you decide to sign up for a personal training program? Do NOT sign any contract with them. Do it month by month so that you can cancel any time without being hooked for an entire year or more if you are not careful of what you are signing. Once you signed, considered yourself screwed. You can NEVER stop no matter what your problem is, broke a leg, move out of the country, etc. Their contract works only one way, to rob you legally.
Our suggestion to those young men and women who is interested in becoming a member is to find another gym if you can, there are many other gyms out there that you can join that are a lot better than LA Fitness. LA Fitness Center has the worst scam system. Good luck, we hope that people read these complaints before they become a member rather than after like most of us did.