Aug 23, 2012

Posted by in Fitness First, Training | 29 Comments

Fitness First Philippines – make sure you read this before you join

One of the most popular Fitness chains in the Philippines is Fitness First so it’s understandable that a lot of people work out or want to work out there. The usual reasons for wanting to join a gym are to gain muscle or to lose weight and Fitness First is a great gym and has a lot of classes that’ll help you achieve both.

If you’re thinking of joining Fitness First because you want to lose weight, you might want to read my other post if you’re new to it all: 5 Common Weight Loss Mistakes that People Make That post should help you get started.

I also wrote posts about Gold’s Gym and Slimmers World so you might want to check those two out as well:

Gold’s Gym Philippines Essential Info
Slimmers World – read before you join

And if you don’t have any workout clothes yet and are interested in shopping for some. You can get yours at Zalora Philippines. They accept cash on delivery as a mode of payment so they’re currently my favorite local online shopping site. I wrote a post about my first purchase if you’re interested in learning more.

Zalora Philippines Review & Purchase Process

Finally, be sure to check out our local group buying sites. You never know if there’s a deal for the gym that you want to enroll in:

Top Group Buying Sites in the Philippines

Going back to FF, before you decide to join you need to understand a couple of things about the gym chain. They do lock-in contracts after all so it’s better to be informed before you sign them and commit your credit card to monthly deductions icon wink Fitness First Philippines   make sure you read this before you join

What is Fitness First Philippines?

fitness first Philippines Fitness First Philippines   make sure you read this before you join

Fitness First an international chain of health clubs that offers for it’s members free use of their gym equipment, diverse fitness classes, and some relaxation programs as well. Here in the Philippines we have a number of Clubs all over the islands with a high concentration of them being in the Metro Manila Area. I’ve been a member of Fitness First for about a 2 years now and I have to admit that I’m pretty satisfied with the equipment and facilities.

If I had one complaint though it’s the membership price which in my opinion is a bit too expensive. Mine was P3,000.00 per month because I didn’t get the longer lock in period. If you’re looking to work out at a gym like Fitness First, I suggest you check out what the closest branch is from your house or office.

One of the most important considerations for regular workouts is location, so don’t pick one that’s too far or too tedious to visit otherwise you’ll never get yourself motivated enough to go later on. You need to pick a gym that’s as easy to get to as possible so that you won’t have any excuse not to visit. I’ll include links to the locations at the bottom of this post along with other useful links if you’re interested in signing up with Fitness First Philippines.

What to expect

I won’t be talking with too much detail about their facilities and their classes because you can read about those at their site. You’ll find the links at the bottom. What I will be telling you are the things I like about the gyms I went to for two years as well as the stuff I didn’t like.

UPDATE: be sure to not leave cash or valuables in your locker unless you have a way of securing it. There have been instances where their locking system doesn’t work and people still find money being lost. This advise is something you need to consider regardless of the gym you workout at because this can happen anywhere. Here’s a link to one of the readers that experienced this http://thefitpinoy.com/fitness-first-philippines-make-sure-you-read-this-before-you-join/#comment-2534

Here are some things to expect if you’re going to join:

    • Like I said earlier, it’s going to be pricy. If you compare it to something like Gold’s Gym or my school gym Moro Lorenzo, the Fitness First Monthly fee is almost twice that of the other two.
    • There are a lot of members especially during the after work hours. I used to have to wait for the benches to free up sometimes.
    • You need to pay a bit more so that you can go to most of the gyms. They call it a Passport account. But even with this one you still can’t go to the Fitness First Platinum gyms.
    • Fitness First Rates fluctuate from a little less than 1.5K to around 3K for the passport types and 3.5K for the Platinum accounts. This makes them the most expensive out of the popular city malls in manila (the other two being Gold’s Gym and Slimmers World). The rate they charge you will depend on the lock in period you choose (4 months, 6 months, and 1 year yung mga naalala ko), your company affiliations (I hear there are some corporate discounts for some companies), and whatever promo they have going on at the time. Make sure to try to bargain for the cheapest you can get when talking to their sales people. They’ll try to milk you for all you’ve got but at the end of the day they’ll settle with getting you to sign up for a lower price if they have to. I suck at bargaining so I paid the full 3K per month deal lol. My brother was paying around 2.4K or 2.5K for his membership. We were both passport holders but we never bothered upgrading to platinum.
    • They have really good equipment though so that’s a plus. Most of their stuff is either new or well maintained. They’ve also got a lot of diversity with their machines.
    • Their trainers are nice and they’ve got a lot so if you get one to assist you he/she’ll usually be able to focus on your workout without any distractions from other members.
    • The CRs are really good. They’re clean and the lockers are convenient. They’ve also got liquid soap and shampoo in the shower stalls already (I suspect they’re the same thing and just labeled differently).
    • They have a free sauna though I never really use it since I’m not into that.
    • Classes are free so if you get bored with weight lifting and traditional cardio on the machines you can try some of the dance and aerobic classes.
    • The Gym I normally go to (Robinsons Manila) has a punching bag and TRX gear (suspension cables). I’m not really sure about the other branches.
    • There’s a lounge place with free coffee inside. They’ve also got a smoothie and healthy food stall so you can eat there before or after your workout.
    • They’ve got multiple TVs in front of the cardio machines so that you don’t get too bored with your workout.
    • You get a free bag, earphones, towel and “I think” water bottle when you join. I’m not sure about the last one, can’t remember.
    • They have a pretty awesome cycling class.
    • The staff were pretty easy to talk to whenever I had issues.

That’s pretty much it for the things that stood out with me. The big turn off really for my case was the price. 3K is just a little too much for me so I’ll be cutting my membership after next month. September will be the last month of Fitness First for me.

UPDATE: I’ve already stopped going to Fitness First and will be focusing more on CrossFit Training.

I will still box though. I’m thinking of just buying 10 sessions a month of boxing at Elorde Gym for 1.5K. It’s a better option I think and they’ve got free weights over there if I ever feel the need to pump some iron. My boxing trainings are also a lot more intense than my regular weight lifting sessions so I’ll just stick to that for now.

I’ll be writing about my Elorde Boxing Gym Experience in my next post so be sure to come back. Thanks all for reading this rather lengthy post. Stay tuned, keep training, and stay fit.

For more information about their classes, branches and FAQs, just head on over to their site:

http://www.fitnessfirst.com.ph/

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1x1.trans Fitness First Philippines   make sure you read this before you join
Malds Menzon is the owner and main writer for The Fit Pinoy blog. He's a law student, blogger, internet marketer and fitness enthusiast who enjoys writing about all the gyms he's been to and fitness classes he's tried. He spends most of his time either at the gym or studying/writing at one of the Starbucks places in the Metro Manila Area. He usually looks a little too serious but he's a nice guy so don't be afraid to say hi if you run into him :). You can follow or add him on Twitter and Google+ by clicking the appropriate buttons on your left (below the picture).
  1. I’ve been wondering if I should join. My girlfriend said the people are very nice. She said she liked Gold’s Gym’s culture where everybody’s minding their own business. Thanks for the post. It was very thorough.

    • Go lang, boto ako sa kahit ano that promotes fitness. If you end up joining Fitness though make sure you haggle for a cheap rate. They’re the most expensive kasi out of the three popular city gyms (golds and slimmers being the other two).

      • GoldsGym highly recommended, much cheaper f u get to avail the promo only less 1k month…FitnessFirst s to pricey…

        • HI im just a stundent and im below 18 years old can i still join the fitness first even thought im still young ?

          • Hi Drich, yup you can. You’re gonna need to bring your parents or guardian when you register tho cuz you can’t sign the paperwork yourself :).

  2. HI I recently joined fitness first. they charged me 3865 for the membership fee plus 2950 each month. 5 months lang membership ko so kaya daw mas mahal. Anyway do you think its too much?

    • Medyo ganun talaga ata price nila, kasi ako i was charged 3k a month and i was locked in for 4 or 6 months lang. My brother who got the 12 month thing was paying around 2.5 or 2.4k.

      I never bothered haggling for mine though since that was just a gift to me from my mom, my guess is it would still have been possible to bring it down a bit.

  3. CONVERSATION WITH FITNESS FIRST MANAGER:

    MANAGER: “I am sorry, I have no power to change TV channels, I have no power to grant your request to put back CNN in replacement of the cartoon channel, I have no power to grant your request to cancel membership because you are so pissed off with my branch since December 2012, I have no power to transfer your membership to North Edsa, I have to power to transfer your remaining PT days to North Edsa, I have no power to reimburse your unused PT if you decide to cancel membership, I have no power to keep the air conditioning running until 10 pm so that you will have proper and healthy ventilation and not inhale each others breath, I have no power to stop members from bringing in smelly food and have a feast at the lobby though the rules prevent them from doing so, I have no power to be honest in informing the prospective and present members that aircondition will be turned off by about 9pm, I have no power to stop my staff from giving solicitation letters to members, I have no power to stop our staff from telling stories to members on how they disagree with company policies…….”

    MEMBER: “Oh, I am sorry to hear that I am talking to a powerless
    Manager.”

    MANAGER:”You are insulting me.”

    MEMBER: HUH? Insulting? I merely used YOUR own words.

    • lol nakakatawa naman tong manager na to.

    • thats the dumbest thing a manger can ever say
      you shouldve reported it to he head office and file an formal complaint. Although its not an assurance that they will grant your requst or even do anything AT ALL, they need to be pinched ( if not punched) so they realize that they should adjust to customers need and pattern — sometimes i feel theyre getting to arrogant — and theyre just employees, duhh.

    • head office address and contact number of FF?, anyone who has details?

      I did not realize it has been months, no response yet from Fitness First regarding my refund…….

      • Sorry to hear about your troubles Orly. According to yellowpages and juice, eto ata head office nila:

        26/F Citibank Tower, Villar Street, Salcedo Village, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines
        Phone: +63(2)8481929

        Good luck. It’s gonna be hard to get them to act on the refund quickly, that’s if they give it at all :(.

  4. Charisse says:

    Wow, my boyfriend’s membership costs 2300. He didn’t pay for the admin fee which is 1500. Ang deal sa amin kasi pwede niya ako isama anytime as long as itetext namin yung agent before entering. And it is for free, so parang dalawa na kaming nakikinabang sa membership. Kaya napasubo kami agad, walking distance lang siya sa workplace niya. you think it is really worth it? Haha napaisip lang ako upon reading your blog about slimmer’s and Gold’s.

    • Hey Charisse, kung pwede ka nga makapasok like you mentioned then sulit na sya lol. parang nagbayad nalang kayo ng 1,150 which is pretty cheap na hehe.

    • I do not think there is a complete disclosure from an FF agent ,as you quoted ….. “Ang deal sa amin kasi pwede niya ako isama anytime as long as itetext namin yung agent before entering. And it is for free, so parang dalawa na kaming nakikinabang sa membership. Kaya napasubo kami agad.”

      I was given a ticket for a free entrance of any person that I will bring to the club. There is a fine print in the rules that you have to make an appointment at least 24 hours prior, they will ask for several IDs and before you companion can start a work out, he/she will be interviewed and contact numbers will be asked. The free entry is good only for FF to market/offer the club.

  5. cocoy pusung says:

    Member ako dati ng Fitness First Mall of Asia, di ko na pinagpatuloy masyadong mahal, para sa akin di worth it ang price, pang mayaman lang talaga sya, anyway, kung ang aim nyo lang ay weight management like losing weights, di mo na kailangan ng gym, the great outdoor is enough, you can run, swim, bike, hike, join a mountaineering club para mas enjoy at you will be one with the nature, else, if you really need weights, you can use your own body weight, try to read about functional training. with this you are building a functional body that applies to your everyday routine, not like in the gym, everything is set ideally for you but come to think of it are you really applying your moves in the gym in a real life situation. well, kanya kanya naman diskarte yan, if you really into fitness and want to try functional training, you can join us, meet new people and friends and best of all “IT’S FREE”.

    you may contact me with my email or fb (Cocoy Pusung)

    Health is wealth
    May you all have a healthy and active life

  6. kapag nag join ka ba tapos 4 months yung kinuha mo do you have to pay it na? i mean 18k agad or monthly ka lang mag babayad?

    • monthly pa din naman, hindi sya one time big time. Kung naka CC ka tho automatic sya kakaltas every month.

    • Until now Fitness First has not refunded me my unused PT which is more or less 7K.

      Check with FF with great certainty. I know they have a provision that there is automatic renewal if you did not notify them in writing that you are not renewing your membership.

  7. madami modus ang fitness first like di na nila nirefund ung body first ko just because isang visit na lng daw ang kulang ko. e ang sabi ng sales july21 pa kme start tas ng count ba nmn cla sa july 14. i plan to terminate pero nka contract pla kme ng 12 months. i so much regret enrolling talaga. tsk tsk tsk.

    • hehe i feel you. Medyo nahassle din ako at kapatid ko before sa termination policies nila. The gym has nice equipment to be fair naman. Pero their policies favor the company more. That’s why I like yung mga smaller gyms now kasi mas pro customers sila.

      • yup. kaso mautak din tlga ung sales nila. of course they want to sell kaya di nila dinedetailed lhat if evry ganito mangyayari pag ganito. so ganun tlga. im super inis tlga if everytime i saw damn salesman.

  8. Hi Malds,

    Do you think there is an appetite for a 24/7 gym in the philippines? This is a huge success in Australia.

    • There are a couple already actually. Eclipse comes to mind and I know there’s another one in Quezon City that my friend used to train at.

      I think it’d work in a place like Manila or maybe Cebu. You’d have to make sure it’s positioned really close to it’s target late night market tho. I think most of the people who’d benefit from something like this would be people who work in BPOs.

      I used to train with a guy who worked out either late at night, before he went to work, or really really early in the morning before he went home. So I guess you’d have to really go after those type of customers. And for most people it’s usually convenience, which translates in my book to location, that’d be the most important factor there.

  9. Gregory Morse says:

    Fitness First is controlled behind the scenes by American black-ops syndicates and boxing syndicates. Those who are intelligent enough to understand what electronic control of a gym entails would also know to stay away from this loser gym known for having custom mind-programmed homosexuals and other types of perverts who are all in various mobs and syndicates. I had a personal trainer Heman James Ines here who was a thug tied into the boxing syndicate and Team Paquiao who would have me drugged at my home before training, endless fattening stunts and tube feedings, as well as my open coffee lacked with date rape drug Rohypnol as a form of control. If the gym takes interest in you, your entire life will end up targeted and surrounded by syndicate and mob perverts. Best be advised to be careful. Even fitness instructor for BodyAttack, Rico Comia would endlessly bring out bread loaves, cakes and even Cheetos while giggling like a moron in the middle of classes, a form of fattening bullying the instructors their commonly use. Most people do not realize how powerful the American syndicates are do to high-tech weapons which are generally only used within America but have crept into the Philippines including remote neural monitoring (RNM), directed energy weapons and other such nonsense. I would not jump into a gym membership here though if you do not understand this technology and the way the syndicates covertly operate as amateur spies. And if you do understand it all, then you would not be wasting your time reading this as you could find an “off the grid” place to train.

  10. Stephen Yap says:

    FITNESS FIRST FORT MEMBERS BEWARE!
    If you think the lockers in Fitness are secure, think again. I normally bring my money clip/card holder, phone, and keys when I work out. I store them in the lockers while I sweat it out on the floor. For those that are not familiar with how their lockers work. You put your membership card in a slot inside the locker box and that allows you to lock the box and pull out the keys which you take with you. The idea being that you are the only one with the key to open that locker. Last tuesday Aug. 12 at around 8:15pm I did what I usually do and stored my things in the locker. Also on that day I had withdrawn via ATM 10k. After my workout I got my stuff and what caught my eye was my cash seemed only half inserted into the money clip. I don’t normally do this but I thought maybe it happened when I pulled out my fitness first membership card earlier. I left and got some dinner. When I paid for my dinner in cash, I saw that I did not have 10k cash. I was missing 2k. I traced my steps and I did not make any cash purchases between the time I withdrew 10k and when I got to the gym. While I thought that maybe there was a chance someone stole money from me in the gym, I did not discount the fact that maybe I misplaced or dropped it somehow. The next Thursday I arrived at the gym and I did a few things that I normally do not do. I counted my money. I picked a different locker from last Tuesday. I also placed my keys against my money clip in such a way that if someone moved my money clip, my keys would also move position. Thanks to Monsour del Rosario for this tip. I left to start my workout and after an hour when I opened the locker I immediately noticed that my keys moved. I got my money clip and counted my money and 2k was missing. I reported it to management and filled up a report. I told the manager present that I am not hoping to get my money back but that I wanted management to do a couple of things. First, they need to inform the members that the lockers are not secure at all. Second, I want them to consider changing the lockers to allow members to bring in their own locking devices because their keylock system is not effective. Anyway, I am still waiting for them to respond. But I know several FB friends who work out there and just want to make sure they are aware of this. It seems that this thief’s MO is not to take everything but to take a few bills hoping you will not notice. Second, based on this MO, I suspect that this thief is someone from the gym staff or is a regular because it seems his intent to take out a few bills on a regular basis. Anyway, I hope this helps others though I’m still thinking of how I can workout (weights and cardio) and have all my stuff with me at all times.

    • That sucks stephen. But your suggestions to them definitely make sense. If they can’t properly secure their lockers with their system then customers should be allowed to do it the way they feel is best.

      Thanks for letting us know about this and I hope they catch the dude who stole from you.

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