Health clubs – where’s the sense of community?

I have never really believed that health clubs delivered a deep sense of community, and so it comes as little surprise to me that my local health club is plagued by theft.

Recently, my brother and his family spent the day with me and we visited my local club. The day went well, until my young nephew could not find his £70 trainers (Heelies – shoes on wheels, which is the hot new shoe for kids). He only took them off for a few minutes to have some fun in the club’s soft play area.

Theft from health clubs is not rare. I’ve had plenty of things taken, and the club has suffered a spate of lockers being emptied by people using bolt cutters! In the past few days, I have known of a pair of shoes, a handbag and a young boy’s Game Boy been stolen, and I am just one member.

Now when I visit, I feel ‘on guard’. I only use lockers that are very public and take my bag through to the café bar rather than leave it in the open corridor storage. Why should it be like this? I thought health clubs were meant to be full of honest people just like me? Populated by people that share similar values, but this does not seem to be the case at my health club. I share the club with other members, but we don’t seem to share much else. Perhaps, this is indicative of a general erosion of the sense of community that people now feel everywhere.

I would be interested to know what you think, so please leave a comment below.

Ps I would like to add as a follow up, that the Club Manager quickly followed up this incident and arranged a complimentary meal for my brother and his family. Has this gesture made a difference? Absolutely, my brother is again singing the praises for this well-known club chain.

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