The Modern “Gym”

Written by Jason Ferruggia Topics: Training


Anyone who reads this site regularly knows how much I hate 99% of all public gyms. It’s just not really my scene. Plus they never have the stuff I want and always have too much of the stuff I don’t want.

I found this piece by Stuart McRobert which echoes my sentiments (and probably yours) and thought it was awesome so I’m sharing it here:

“This gym is all appearance and no substance. It is only because we have a lot of fancy-looking equipment that we impress everyone who knows little or nothing about training. Because we have spent a lot of money on marginal, useless and sometimes dangerous equipment we must encourage our members to use it. We never encourage the old-fashioned basic exercises. In fact, to save you from being tempted to use the latter, you will never find a power rack or lifting platform here, and the squat racks we have are flimsy and unused. Who on earth wants to squat? Too much like hard work. Our instructors are as useless as we are, though some of them have very good physiques due to excellence genetics and/ or use of steroids.

To deter you from using the time-proven most productive (but most uncomfortable) exercises, we have joined ranks with other gyms to perpetuate the hokum that basic barbell exercises are dangerous and, at best, only useful for beginners who are not fortunate enough to train in a modern well-equipped gym like ours. This is convenient for us though, because we barely know the first thing of instructing safe and productive technique in the biggest and best barbell exercises. We promote the idea that you need a wide variety of isolation and machine exercises in every workout.

We make exercise fun. You can watch yourself in the many mirrors we have, listen to music we entertain you with, talk while you train, and ogle the skimpily clad bodies of the genetically blessed, sensual female instructors we employ to keep you interested in renewing your membership. Training here is fun, and fun means lots of members, though few of them stay long term. We depend on a constant influx of new members to make a profit.

Welcome to this gym. We promise we will not push you hard, and we hope you will enjoy your time here. That is, you will enjoy it until you realize that the methods we promote will not help make you big and strong unless you have fantastic genetics or are pumped up on gear. Or like our regulars you will decide to forget about getting big and strong, and come here only for social contacts and visual kicks. Welcome to our gym!”

Sadly, Stuart was describing the majority of all gyms on the planet. And unfortunately it’s only getting worse.

That’s all I got.

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