Wrong priorities.

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benjiwengy's review of Virgin Active Health Clubs - www.virginactive.co.uk


“Wrong priorities.”

Written on: 13/07/2013 by benjiwengy (1 review written)

Over the past couple of years, I've visited over 40 Virgin Active gyms. I have also some knowledge of other gyms, including Esporta which Virgin has acquired.

So I think this review should be a fair appraisal.

A lot that goes into making the experience of going to a gym a good or poor one, is the behaviour of the other members. To a large extent, there's not much the owners can do about this, other than try and set some high standards so the members know what is expected of them.

I'd say the customer service I've received is good, and the staff excellent. However there are a few problems with the facilities.

It's all very well spending money on equipment and classes, but the basics need to right. I reckon 90% of the Virgin Active gyms I've been to need to have their shower areas refurbished. They are often grotty, broken and dirty. It's unfortunate that the cleaners spend a lot of their time picking up used towels and rubbish dropped by members with the habits of spoilt teenagers. If the shower areas where up to scratch, perhaps they'd get the message?

One star lost there.

My other gripe is more serious. Esporta used Lifefitness as their supplier. When Virgin took over, they spent a vast sum of cash changing over to Techogym. This was a terrible waste of money(it should have been spent upgrading the showers). Technogym, especially the cardio machines are inferior, about one step up from something you might buy down at Argos. All show and no go. Rubbish.

This really affects how satisfying your workouts are. For reasons I won't go into here, I have to use Virgin Gyms. But all things being equal, I would seek out somewhere that uses Lifefitness instead.

It is for this reason that I couldn't recommend Virgin Active to someone else.

Another star lost.

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Realgymuser's Response to benjiwengy's Review

Written on: 13/07/2013

I agree with you absolutely about Technogym equipment - poorly designed shoddily made tat. The sort of thing you would expect to find gathering dust in the corner of a spare bedroom. I walked out of Virgin Active Romford the day they installed this low-grade junk. Virgin and the other rip-off health clubs use it because it is cheap and because it drives out people serious about their training.

Be careful what you wish for when it comes to Virgin refurbishing the showers. The new showers at Romford have cramped cubicles, non-adjustable jets, taps you can't grip and brown plastic tiling complete with a grain which will conceal dirt and harbour germs. In effect another massive downgrade by Virgin.

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