Friday, August 27, 2010

The joys of competition

Million dollar health club, Amherst $19.99/month for students
Million dollar health club, Hadley. Under $8.50 per month
$50 million UMass Recreation Center: $0.0 for students

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, yeah, but what does a typical in state UMass. undergrad pay for tuition, fees, etc. per year?

LarryK4 said...

And all students pay that, but not all of them will ever set foot in the Rec Center.

Anonymous said...

Leading Edge continually frustrates me with all they do with gain new members/student members and how little they do to retain existing community members. In the summer of 2009, their fees dropped down to $19.99/mo. A few months later (when that gimmick didn't work), the fees went back up to $29.99 with new additional charges for yoga and pilates classes ($20/month). Even now with the student prices, they aren't offering the same deal to non-students who might stick around longer and be more loyal in the long-run. I was a Leading Edge member for 6+ years, but tired of such antics (and the continually declining quality of the childcare offered there... ) and am now looking for a new gym.

LarryK4 said...

And when they first opened as "Gold's Gym" they were around $70/month.

At my former Club I developed a mailorder data base that I dubbed my "K-Mart shoppers", and they would only rejoin the Club when I sent out a "super special" which I did about four times per year.

That way you kept it somewhat secret and did not piss off the regular members who paid normal rates.

And truthfully, it was not like I was ripping off the "normal members" because most of them actually used the Club a "normal" amount and therefor got their moneys worth, while the "K-Mart shoppers" would rush in to sign up before the "super special" expired but then actually used that membership very little.

Of course these days I don't even know what "normal" prices are for a health club in this Valley, although nationwide I would guess around the $50/month mark.

Anonymous said...

"That way you kept it somewhat secret and did not piss off the regular members who paid normal rates.
"

nice ethics

Anonymous said...

How about Planet Fitness? Although they don't have classes you can pay as little as $10 a month. It's clean, the equipment is fine, and nobody hassles you about anything. You go, do your thing, and leave. That price is what keeps me there even though Leading Edge has classes I would like to take and their "women's only" circuit room which I would really love. I just don't want to pay $30 a month. Can't afford it.

T. Zafian said...

Golds/Leading Edge has done the same thing. New members pay the teaser rates, and existing members pay much more. They would give the long-term members the lower prices only when if they specifically inquired about it, and wben the prices dropped to $19.99 last summer, I am sure that some of the long-term members had been paying $39.99 or more before then. When I joined way back when, I was paying $54.99.

One difference with the L. Edge's teaser rates and yours is that the new members lock in the lower rates for as long as they are members -- they are not just for a short time. As a long term member, this policy definitely didn't seem fair to me and made me feel as though they cared nothing about my long-term loyalty or that of other long-term members.

Plus the classes that they started charging extra for (yoga and pilates) are ones that are attended more by non-students than students, so as a non-student, it felt to me like a double whammy.

LarryK4 said...

Oldest sayings in the book: "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is"; and my favorite, "You get what you pay for."

And a close third: "Buyer beware."

Anonymous said...

Planet Fitness rocks!!!

Anonymous said...

The Leading Edge fired at least one individual who did child care responsibly. They treat their employees like dirt. At least three trainers there moved over to Planet Fitness. As ye reap, so shall ye sow.

Hampshire Athletic pays taxes in Amherst, and one has no problem finding a human being with a conscience there.

Anonymous said...

Leading Edge is currently offering free 7-day passes on its web site, but after reading these comments, I am thinking they are not worth it.

Anonymous said...

You left out one photo. You left out your out of business sign.

LarryK4 said...

Actually it was not much of a sign.

The opening line said "After 28 years in business..."