I joined Urban Active Fitness in Toledo and must admit I was purposely lied to by the sales associate. I signed up before the facility was completed and had opened for business. Let me just say BUYER BEWARE. Today, the facility is open and people can experience it first hand before obligating themselves to a membership. I strongly suggest that people think about their first impressions before signing on the dotted line. Look around and see how many fitness experts are helping members?, is there anyone wiping down the machines? , can you talk normally or do you have to raise your voice to be heard because the music is so loud?, does the sales associate pressure you to sign up and pay today?,
Now, I joined at the preview center before the facility was open. A couple of questions that I had asked were:
Question: How many lanes is the pool?
Reality: The pool has 3 lanes total
Question: Will there be a locker room attendant?
Response: yes, we'll have a full time locker room attendant.
Reality: I've been to the facility 4 times - 3 times in the evening and once at lunchtime and at no time was there ever a locker room attendant.
Question: Will there be music throughout the facility and will the volume be kept low?
Response: Yes, and yes.
Reality: As advertised, there is music throughout the facility however, the volume is not low, it is obnoxiously loud.
As a 42 year old female who has has belonged to different fitness facilities over the years, here are my observations - note these are based on 4 visits to the facility. I'll update my observations as time permits in the coming weeks/months. I'm hoping the music volume will be lowered, but I have my doubts.
1. The facility is nice. It should be... it's brand new. It consists of 2 floors - completely open to one another.
2. There is plenty of equipment both weight machines and aerobic machines located on 2 floors.
3. Some of the tv's attached to the aerobic machines do not work, the volume doesn't work or the pictures are very fuzzy. Some of the aerobic machines don't work. Maybe this will be fixed - only time will tell.
4. The locker rooms are nice...again, they are new. There are two wall mounted hair dryers in the woman's locker room. There is NO towel service - so if you shower, make sure you bring your own towel. There is not any shampoo, conditioner or lotion (in case you're used to these amenities, they don't exist at Urban Active Fitness). They do however have soap in the soap dispensers. There are no paper towels anywhere in the locker rooms. There is a hand dryer on the wall that when activated that sounds like a jet engine upon takeoff. The theme at Urban Active seems to be "the louder the better".
5. The music is extremely loud. If you like hard rock and grunge, then this is the place for you. There is not one room in the facility where music is not blaring. Most of the aerobic machines have tv screens attached, no matter how high you put the tv volume, you cannot block out the other music. If you're on the 2nd floor, you can yell down to the first floor and no one will hear you because the music is so loud. I would hate to think what their response time is if there is an emergency. (I'd seriously be worried from a liability standpoint if I was their insurance provider). Since I specifically asked about the volume level of the music and was told by the sales associated the volume would be kept low, one can only classify this as being purposively misled.
6. Besides the music and the tv monitors, there are also large flat panel tv's all over the place displaying the hard rock bands and grunge bands. I'm not sure how much stimulation people need, but obviously Urban Active thinks that loud blaring music and tv's will enhance your workout.
7. They claim they get 100 cable channels. WRONG. The cable channels go to channel 62, and then skip 63-99. There are about 8 channels above 100 all devoted to the "Urban (grunge) Active Fitness" message. No big deal here - I just feel that if you advertise 100 channels, there should be 100 channels.
8. There are 2 - yes 2 - drinking fountains in the facility. One on the first floor and one on the 2nd floor....for a $13 million, 53,000 square foot fitness facility, I find this amazing. The fountains are not suitable to filling water bottles, nor is the water that comes out of them chilled. Both fountains are hidden in little cubby holes. On the other hand, there is a juice bar on the 1st floor that will willingly sell you something to drink!
9. There are fitness "experts" located on the 1st floor. I've asked a couple of facility related questions and each and every time I've been told "I don't know, maybe you should ask at the front desk". So, rather than them saying "I don't know, let me go find out", I'm being given the task of asking my question to another person for a 2nd time. I'm not sure what purpose the people on the 1st floor serve, but their knowledge is limited and they seem to possess no incentive to broaden their knowledge. My guess is that this is due to poor training, but I honestly don't know. I just hope none of them are confronted with an emergency at the facility, as they'd probably direct the person needing help to the front desk.
Conclusion: It appears that Urban Active Fitness is targeting the 14-25 year old crowd. I joined because the price was right. However, I regret my decision. The music is too loud and too obnoxious. They'll have my money for one year and after that I'm going back to Wildwood Athletic. I'm fairly sure that they'll do fine for the first couple of years, because that's what people's agreements are for, but after that, I'm betting there will be a huge migration out of there. I hope people complain about the music being too loud - if they lower the volume - or just turn it off completely (doesn't everyone have an mp3 player anyway?) I'll be a much happier member. Again, only time will tell.
on Feb 24, 2008 at 03:15:34 pm
I know what you mean, when you say people shouldn't sign-up for a membership, before the place is even open. I did this at the PowerHouse Gym on Central avenue, about 8 or 9 years ago, shortly before they opened the doors. They told me that the price would be lower (now), if I signed-up, before they opened. I paid the entire membership fee, for 3 years, upfront.
I signed up, okay, but the place didn't actually open up for a few more months. Then when I tried to renew my membership, (at a lower annual rate), a couple years later, using the DATE they actually opened the doors, I was told that I was a couple months past my expiration date on my membership. They wanted me to pay the premium price again, for a new membership. I tried to explain to them, that my membership should have started the date the facility opened, not the date I signed the contract (a couple months earlier....when there wasn't any equipment or carpeting in the place).
You said you joined because the "price was right." What is the price ? What is the length of the contract ?
Personally, I would like to pay on a month-to-month basis, for a couple months, as part of a trial. I know these sort of places frown on that, since most people would lose interest in working out, and not sign up for a 2 or 3 year contract (which is what The Clubs want).
Is your contract transferrable ? Can you get out of the monthly payment obligation, and let someone else assume your contract and take over the payments ?
What are their hours ? Do they have basketball courts ?
posted by djimpelr
on Feb 24, 2008
at 07:48:55 pm
The length of the contract is 18 months and the cost was $700 plus a $21.34 processing fee. I was quoted a $53.36 rate for 24 months which comes out to be $1302.08 (including the $21.34 processing fee). When I signed up I was told the $700 rate would not be available after the club opened. (Based on the unethical sales person I dealt with, I'm guess the rate is still available). I'm not sure if the contract is transferable or not...I'll have to read the fine print.
I agree that a trial membership of 2-3 months is the way to go. If the club is as good as they advertise, then they would have no problems in getting people to commit for the long term after their trial runs out.
posted by anapple
on Feb 25, 2008
at 04:10:31 pm
They seem to prey on the naive, insecure, and people who want to look like someone else.
I would like to check the place out. But I'd probably prefer running or biking in a more peaceful environment than a meat market with handiwipes.
posted by charlatan
on Feb 25, 2008
at 11:28:18 pm
Wow, 40$ a month is supposed to be a bargain?!?! I was going to look into that place, but I'll just stick with the YMCA pburg.. no lound music, great equipment, towels included, and about the same monthly rate.
No offense, but I would never sign up for something I knew nothing about. ALL facilities like these have sales people that act the same way, they are sales people. But as far as a locker room attendant goes - I am GLAD there isn't one, I mean - for what?
But thanks for the post, I guess. Do you know scubachick?
posted by Ryan
on Feb 26, 2008
at 08:05:15 pm
1 person liked this
No offense taken, but as I stated above, I'm very familiar with workout facilities. I asked the questions regarding issues that were important to me, thus showing some knowledge of workout facilities. The point that I had hoped to make by posting was that I was lied to and to warn others that what they are told by Urban Fitness may not exactly be the truth.
The purpose of a locker room attendant is to keep the space clean and orderly. My experience has been that the facilities that have an attendant or at least someone responsible for the locker room are 9 times out of 10 cleaner, free of vandalism and overall, well kept.
No, I do not know scubachick.
posted by anapple
on Feb 27, 2008
at 12:20:05 pm
I think most of your problems would be resolved if you just went and talked to someone about it at the front desk or ask for a manager. I have been going to Urban Active since September of last year and am extremely pleased with their services.
You mentioned broken equipment. In my opinion if something is broken it would be common sense to go and tell someone rather than waiting for it to be fixed. One of the the machines were broke i used to use, no one was saying anything, so i told an attendant and it was fixed within a week.
There are very few attendants compared to people who actually work out so you must understand there is no way they can watch all these people at the same time. You also mention people not wiping down equipment. I agree, but like i said, how can you monitor 200 people at once. If your that concerned i would just wipe it down myself.
It sounds like you should of taken the tour at the other gym on Sylvania first before you signed up at Maumee, this way you would of got an idea of what it was like.
I also don't think the music is loud at all.
Most of the attendants on the first floor are the trainers and i don't see what your gripe is with them asking you to see someone at the front desk.
As for the guy that said $40 a month, that is not true. I pay $25 a month at Urban Active.
Both places are packed out every day, surely they can't all be gullible people who signed up out of pressure.
I belonged for three months last year and was sorely dissapointed. What's up with having only like 6 showers? I don't have all day on my lunch hour to wait for a shower. They could do without the lounge arear in the lockerroom and instead add more showers or a communal one with a bunch of stalls.
posted by Ryan
on Apr 12, 2009
at 11:14:18 am
1 person liked this
I just moved to the area and was looking for a club to work out in. I ended up finding a little known gem from an article I read in the Toledo Blade about a new Cardio Fitness Room opening up at the Rossford Rec Center. It is not as large or glamerous as some of the other clubs in the area, but the new cardio fitness room has got some awesome equipment in there that I have not seen anywhere else. These include expresso bikes, cardio waves, and adaptive motion trainers. Not only is their annual fee cheaper than some of the other clubs joining/initiation fees, they also give you the option of annual, quarterly, or monthly options so you don't have to feel like you are signing your life away. I joined for the whole year since the fees were not bad, but my parents were able to take out a 3 month pass since they head south during the winter months and travel around alot during the summer months. Their website is www.rossfordrecreation.com and it should have most of their info. Good luck!
So far I have been pretty pleased with my membership, compared to the other gyms I've used this one is really nice. The equipment is all top notch and new, and the extra amenities they have are great. The cardio cinema (room of cardio machines in front of a movie screen) is a great way for me to get my running in. The atmosphere there is also really nice and motivating. I recommend going in to check it out if you're unsure, I got a nice tour from a personal trainer before I signed up.
"I think most of your problems would be resolved if you just went and talked to someone about it at the front desk or ask for a manager. I have been going to Urban Active since September of last year and am extremely pleased with their services."
Not a chance. You can never get to anybody at UA Maumee with any clout. There are just a bunch of rude teenagers behind the counter with no power to do anything, if you can even get their attention.
I have to agree about many aspects of anapple's experience. I have complained several times about the noise level. In the women's fitness area you hear the music being piped into that room, the music from the main fitness area AND the music from the aerobics classes next door. I suggested that they do what the old 360 fitness do: put the music on a radio frequency that you could tune in to on your music device. I got a lot of snippy answers to the effect that I should expect noise in a gym.
Other issues include the difficulty in finding parking during peak times, as well as insufficient locker facilities. The lockers are too small, there aren't enough of them, and the locker room just isn't big enough.
I wish there were more options. I had been at the Southwest Y but left because there weren't separate family & adult-only locker rooms (read: little kids in wet bathing suits running around). 360 was nice, but they obviously didn't have a sustainable business plan.
If anybody can recommend another place in the south end, I'm game!
posted by WordsRUs
on Mar 04, 2011
at 09:16:34 pm
Crossfit Lifesport, 419-490-9056
You will never be lied to about anything and if you don't like the music, Todd will change it. :)
posted by WordsRUs
on Mar 05, 2011
at 06:04:18 pm
My initial 2 year membership expired in February. I was, and still am paying about $40 a month. So when my contract expired I asked them if they could work on that price a bit, since other clubs around the area are all less, and they wouldn't even talk to me about it. I know other members are paying as low as $20 a month too, depending on when they signed up. You would think that it would be negotiable, but they won't even take time to listen to you. I still like the facilities though, other than the locker room area. Like someone said above me, just to small. I wish they would take that little lounge area where they have a sofa, chair and TV, and turn that into more locker space.
posted by rfisher
on Mar 05, 2011
at 06:58:46 pm
I don't understand paying so much money for a club membership. Really, $700+ for...what?
I bought my own elliptical machine for $150 and use it when I want, at home, without the annoyances gyms bring. At home shower, privacy, whatever kind of music I want, never have to worry about someone busting into a locker, getting foot funk from the locker room floors, and for far cheaper. With the internet today, I can and do research various workouts without needing to consult anyone at a gym.
IMO - gyms are over rated.
posted by OhioKimono
on Mar 06, 2011
at 12:26:30 pm
3 people liked this
I also like working out at home. If you work nights or have varied hours, the convenience is great. Pick your own music, and there's no hassle over parking spots or lockers. Home gym basics can include some type of cardio machine (elliptical, treadmill, stationary bike, etc.), a set of dumbells / free weights, a roll-up mat for stretches, and a dry erase board and spiral notebook to log your workouts and keep track of your progress.
Some people may not have the space for equipment and others say working out in the gym with people helps them stay motivated. There are pros and cons to each so find something that suits your lifestyle.
Always review the contract. Cross out and initial any terms you want to modify. Never let a contract auto-renew. Before signing, always have the vendor put their answers in writing or include it as part of the contract. No surpises later. I heard from other people that the membership center was difficult. It's alot different when you are inside the facility and can get your answers first hand
wordsRus, it's downtown, on Summit north of Cherry, up the street and on the opposite side from Channel 11, right next to where Theo's Taverna used to be. Rumor has it he may be moving up the street when the Y vacates the Riverside workout space. That would be huge! don't expect machines, tho, except rowers, and do expect to get your ass kicked. :)
I fall into the category of someone who's house is too small for exercise equipment so a gym is a necessity for me since I enjoy exercise. I've probably belonged to no less then eight gyms in Toledo over the last 20 years. I used to enjoy the small privately run places, then Bally's, YMCA, Wildwood and now Urban Active.
A lot of pro's and cons have already been mentioned about Urban Active. I just wanted to mention a change of heart I had considering one item about Urban Active. The gym can be terribly crowded during peak hours of the week. Initially, I was pretty disturbed by this but then I recognized that my wife and I also had many conversations that so many of our friends had no interest in exercise and it was hard to find people who wished to engage in regular healthy activities. Here was a place swarming with health conscious individuals with a similar mindset. If you can get over the fear of introducing yourself you can meet a lot of people. I'm guilty like many people of my generation or younger of spending way too much time in isolation and here is a place where there is actually a crowd, not a place hanging by a thread with just a few people coming and going like so many other places in town.
It's just a different prospective that I wanted to throw out there, especially to people who are new to the area. I think the membership prices are a good value now, I know we are under $18 per month for two year pre-paid contracts. I'm not married to Urban Active - I'll probably find another gym in a few years just for the change of environment.
I miss my beloved 360 Fitness. I was so sad when they closed. They were by far the best gym I ever belonged to. They staff actually cared and were always available for anything you needed. I never walked into that gym with hearing a hello and good bye when I left.
The gym was clean clean clean and it was such a positive environment that it truly made it easy to go and work out because you know how nice the gym. I knew several of the managers and they were always available for questions, not to mention they actually taught classes too!
Urban Active really put the final nails in the coffin when they killed them on price. I don't think 360 could compete with the price charged and in the end I am sure financially it failed. Their were on the higher end of fees but I would gladly pay for that gym because of their service. You really felt special at 360 and I am not sure I will find a gym like it again.
I have heard a lot of negative things about UA and I usually take it with a grain of salt, however the one thing and care at this gym and to me that's a deal killer. I don't care if I am paying $25/month, employees should take pride in their work place and treat customers with respect. I don't need someone to kiss my butt, but take care of the gym and your people and my #1 peeve...keep it clean! Nothing worse than a nasty dirty staph infection breeding ground gym...no thanks!