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to try to sneak out of my gym membership early?

(51 Posts)
BonaDea Thu 27-Sep-12 15:16:25

So, I have a gym membership with a big, national gym. I don't like the actual gym, but before being pregnant went to various classes and occasionally used the pool. Got just about enough use out of it not to make it a waste of money.

When I found out I'm pregnant, I looked at the available classes and there is ONE weekly pre / post-natal yoga class available adn even that is in the middle of the working day. So now, I really can't get any use out of my membership at all. I genuinely don't like the big work out room / gym machines and would feel weird in there while blobbing about with a belly. What I want to do is use the money to sign up for some more-conveniently timed ante-natal classes after work / at the weekend.

I THOUGHT the notice period for the gym was 1 month, but it's actually 3 months. That's £240 of wasted gym membership.

I called up the membership team and explained this. I also explained - for good measure - that I am a high risk pregnancy (this is true, because I'm type 1 diabetic, although in practice that doesn't make any difference whatsoever to whether or not I stay in the gym) and asked if I could just give the month's notice. They said that I could but only with a medical note.

So, my question is if IABU to

1. ask my diabetes nurse, midwife or doctor to draft this letter for me, in the full knowledge that there is no real medical reason why I can't carry on with the membership, but hoping that they might see my predicament and help me out (but I don't want to put anyone in a bad position); or
2. just write to them emphatically saying that they can have one month's notice and that's it because they are too stupid / discriminatory not to cater for pregnant people in their class scheduling.

Or should I just suck it up? Any other suggestions?

DeepPurple Thu 27-Sep-12 15:21:20

You could try asking your midwife but in all fairness you agreed to their T&Cs when you signed up.

Do you really pay £80 per month shock

ViviPru Thu 27-Sep-12 15:22:36

Do you really pay £80 per month double shock

meditrina Thu 27-Sep-12 15:23:40

I think it's up to you to decide if you can get a doctor's note for this.

But YWBU to complain about the scheduling of the ante-natal class - unless you are presenting them with a plan to show why they should be putting on more - for not all pregnant women are full time workers. If their current class is well-attended then they are meeting a demand.

BonaDea Thu 27-Sep-12 15:24:08

Yes, I live in central London where the value of money was forgotten some time in the 1950s!!!

Agree I agreed to the ts &cs but fully expected a national chain like that (with a kids club attached) to be much more family friendly. Can't believe they only have one piddly yoga class!

TroublesomeEx Thu 27-Sep-12 15:26:45

I'd give the medical note a go tbh.

The nurse/dr/mw might refuse to write you a note. But then they might not.

The gym might refuse to accept the note. But then they might not.

As my dad would say, give it a go and let them be the ones to say no. Don't anticipate it.

If you don't ask, you don't get.

Gigondas Thu 27-Sep-12 15:27:16

I see your annoyance about 3 m thing but it was in t and c (if its chain I am thinking of it is in small print).

But if you are fit and healthy you can do most forms of exercise provided you take some precautions or let the instructor know, so you don't need a specific ante natal class. You mentioned yoga - is there another one at a time that suits as you could attend that but talk to teacher. I have been in non ante natal classes with pregnant women who did different moves or as much as was comfortable .

Floralnomad Thu 27-Sep-12 15:30:01

If your likely to go to the gym once you have had your baby ask them if they can freeze your membership. Most large chains will do this and if they have a crèche you may get more use out of it then even if only to use up the notice period.

FredFredGeorge Thu 27-Sep-12 15:34:04

Of course you should use any means they find acceptable to get out of it.

eurochick Thu 27-Sep-12 16:03:50

You can give it a go, but why don't you want to do anything other than specific pre-natal classes? Most exercise is fine during pregnancy if you are already doing it before you get pregnant. Gyms are notorious for holding people to their ts and cs though.

whois Thu 27-Sep-12 16:04:06

David Llyod? Their 3 month notice period is very hated. But it is also very well publicised.

BartletForTeamGB Thu 27-Sep-12 17:05:06

I'm a diabetes doctor. I don't know of any reason for you to stop exercising so you wouldn't get a note out of me. Perhaps your doctor might be more persuadable!

secondseverncrossing Thu 27-Sep-12 17:10:16

I'm a bit lost..what do they want the note to say?

Surely if your diabetes isn't relevant (as you say so yourself) then a diabetes nurse won't be able to help you.

I would also feel bad about wasting a Doctor's or Midwife's time writing a note for you - that's just due to me thinking back about how understaffed the m/ws were when I had my DC a couple of years ago...

What exactly do they want from the note? Confirmation that you are pregnant?

BonaDea Thu 27-Sep-12 17:14:04

I fully admit there is no reason to 'stop exercising' and I've been very clear about that! In fact, I would like to keep exercising but would much prefer doing something which is specifically going to prepare me for labour and has the added benefit of meeting other pregnant women in my area.

It's just a rip off and I resent the fact that they don't make any effort to make provision for ante-natal classes and so I'd like to try to sneak out early. I fully acknowledge that there is no real "reason" as such...

McHappyPants2012 Thu 27-Sep-12 17:14:39

Exercise is recommended when you are diabetic, so really can't see any doctor signing the form.

The pool will be great to take the baby once he/ she is born also I found in later stages of pregnacy the local pool was my 2 nd home as it was the only think that took away the aches and pains.

gordyslovesheep Thu 27-Sep-12 17:14:55

I don't understand why you would join a gym but not use the gym - better doing PAYG classes really - surely you can still swim when PG?

anyway - worth a shot a guess but I think yab a bit U - maybe try using the bikes or walking on the tread mill?

BonaDea Thu 27-Sep-12 17:21:03

mchappy - as I have said repeatedly, I WANT to exercise, it's just what suits me isn't available at this gym any more.

The pool WOULD be great for the baby, and I love swimming. However, the pool at my gym is not huge and is very busy at the times when I can get there - after work and at the weekends.

gordy - I've always just liked classes so much better than treadmill etc which I find more boring and I get worse results with (probably because I need someone to shout at me!!). I was attracted to the gym because it had a fantastic range of classes on both before and after work and I was able to get value out of it because I could get to classes. Many pay as you go classes are on too early for me - starting at 6 or 7pm. I usually work til 7pm and so need something early - 6am start or 7.30 - 8pm class.

The classes I typcially did were very high impact - spin or body combat and I wouldn't feel able / comfortable with how hard they were now.

I get it, I'll just try it out then suck it up if needed. I'd just much rather be going to a proper pregancy class.

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Thu 27-Sep-12 17:23:13

Could you ask if they will "pause" your membership for a period of time?

BonaDea Thu 27-Sep-12 17:26:19

Oops- yes, I tried that. They will suspend, but only for 6 months and even then I have to pay 20% of the cost every month. Maybe I should look into whether I can serve out notice while suspended (doubt it - that would be a bit of a loop hole!).

I might just send them my one month's notice, complain about lack of appropriate classes and send a copy of my high risk referral letter. It will probably not do the trick, and if not I'll suck it up. Will be disappointed and kick myself.

limitedperiodonly Thu 27-Sep-12 17:41:40

Why don't you repost in Legal and ask what might happen if you wrote to them saying you'll give them shorter notice and pay the fees for that period?

I imagine they'd set the debt collectors on you but I don't know how enforceable that would be. Presumably the gym could pursue you in the small claims court but only for the fees lost so you wouldn't be losing anything extra. I don't know whether you'd have to pay any costs.

I have no legal training whatsoever but it's worth asking someone who does.

PuggyMum Thu 27-Sep-12 17:55:54

Theres a women in my spin class who is 32 weeks pg! She makes me look like I'm tickling the bike! She can't bend over the handlebars and she doesn't stand up but she def gets the calories out....

Likewise an old body pump instructor did the classes until she was about 36 weeks... But again avoided bending to much!

I'm ttc and will most certainly be keeping up my classes. Just will be sensible about it.

I think to expect a gym to put on specific classes for pg members is ABU. I expect the percentage of users would be very low and non pg members would think that time should be used better.... It's not fair to blame the gym and if the t&c's were clear it WBU to ask a medical professional to lie!

whendotheyleavehome Thu 27-Sep-12 18:01:35

Echo advice about freezing membership - that's what I did when I was sick as a dog for most of preg and then could use creche facilities later

BlueSkySinking Thu 27-Sep-12 18:43:59

Ask to freeze the membership. You should be able to.

thebeesnees79 Thu 27-Sep-12 19:23:37

i tried to get out of mine early because I had severe morning sickness and ended up being admitted to hospital over night for 3 bags of fluids.
They would not budge despite me pleading with them. In the end I only managed to get them to drop the membership because by chance I went to university with the manager!
I had six months left (12 month contract) & I joined before getting pregnant (unplanned!)
Anyway my point is I would get a note from your diabetic midwife because the chances are they won't budge like my gym.
I am never ever joining a gym with a contract again. they sent debt collecting letters to me knowing full well I was pregnant and poorly. Even countless phone calls to head office made zero difference. good luck op

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Thu 27-Sep-12 20:00:13

Yabu. Your diabetic nurse has better things to do with her time than write letters that you shouldn't need. What is she going to say anyway? That you can't even swim now so you shouldn't have to pay what you legitimately owe? hmm

Just suspend the membership or pay out your notice.

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