A couple who say they were threatened and assaulted at Fitness First Kings Cross claim they were not protected by staff and are unhappy with the way the company has responded to the incident.
When Mike and Clem (not their real names) were at the gym last month, two men were dropping their dumbbells so hard the machines the couple were using were shaking. When they asked the men to stop, they claim one of them said he would smash the dumbbells in their faces if they spoke to him again.
Mike went to the gym’s reception area to complain. When he described the men, he claims staff knew who he meant and told him they had caused problems in the past.
He claims it took 10 minutes to find a manager, who Mike says didn’t know how to respond to the situation.
He then tried to return to the second floor to find Clem but was blocked on the stairway by the two men, who he claims shoved him and told him they would kill him if he talked about what had happened.
Mike said this occurred in an area where trainers could see what was happening but none intervened.
The couple are also concerned that the only CCTV camera in the gym did not capture the incident.
Mike emailed a formal complaint to Fitness First later that day, but was told all that could be done was to give the men a warning.
Fitness First told the Star Observer in a statement that it had “strict terms and conditions on its memberships which include club etiquette rules and consequences of misconduct.
“Any incident of threatening behaviour or harassment of any member or person inside our clubs is unacceptable.
“As a result of this formal complaint, the members concerned are being issued with a first and final warning letter as per our membership terms. This letter clearly advises the individuals concerned that if they engage in misconduct in any
Fitness First club which is in breach of any of the terms and conditions outlined in the membership agreement, their membership will be terminated immediately and they will be banned from all Fitness First clubs.”
However, Mike said the men should have been banned on the spot and the couple are now exploring their legal options as they believe the gym breached a duty of care to them.
“I’m absolutely not satisfied by this,” Mike said. “These guys were completely uncontrollable, and now they’ve been given warning letters and can deduce that it was us, they’re probably going to be even more infuriated.”