Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Gym review: Courtside

I've done multiple, extensive searches for the perfect gym over the years:

Golds (check)
Bally's (check)
24-Hour Fitness (check)
Club One (check)
Equinox (check)
JCC (check)
Gym at work (check)
That gym that used to exist in Los Gatos but doesn't anymore (check)

I kept finding myself back at Club One because it seemed to have the best facilities for the price: great classes, and a decent pool. Unfortunately, Club One isn't around much anymore either and there are no locations in my new hood. And I'm definitely not going back to one of these:

Gold's Gym Review
B is for Bally's

When it comes to gym memberships, I'm as fickle as it gets. I've been to just about every gym in the South Bay, and now, you guessed it - I am without gym membership. I recently dropped my membership to the Bay Clubs because I moved, and there isn't a location close enough to my house. A Bay Club membership is also expensive, and I'm finding myself outdoors more and more these days. So, I'm going to buy a TRX and go without an official gym for awhile.You will see me pulling my own body weight all over the city of Sunnyvale. :)

Honestly, though I'm not sad about never going back to Bay Club Courtside (Los Gatos location) again.

Upon mentioning that I was once a member at Club One, the guy at the desk at Bay Club Courtside was like, "This must be so much of an upgrade then, huh?"

I was like, "No asshole, it isn't. I pay more money to work out with mean old people, get killed by people dropping weights, and to use equipment from my college days. Just the fact that you would claim it was better makes you an arrogant prick. Have a nice day."

I didn't say that. But, I really wanted to.

The pool at Bay Club Courtside is lovely and there is always a lane open. They do an excellent job of keeping the kids in the kid pool and the adults who want to work out in the workout pool. Also, the pool is the perfect temperature for long swims - in the 70's, not the 80's.

In the summer, though, the pool is a huge show and tell. Golden bikinis, cougars, and cocktails. Not really my scene.

I also participated in a few spin classes this winter. Both instructors are actual cyclists: road and cyclocross. They both had impressive stories about their own cycling adventures, and put together a kick-butt workout.

Unfortunately pool lanes and spin classes are not enough to make Bay Club Courtside worth the money.

They have a big stretching room area, which is really great. Everyone is quiet and they have some relaxing music pumped in. Except . . .

When you go into the stretching room, there are balls and foam rollers in every corner of the room - except the area where they are supposed to be. No one puts their shit away! I went on a mission to find an eight pound medicine ball, and couldn't find one in either of their three workout areas.  The "Please return Equipment" signs are not working. At other gyms, the trainers will go around and pick up equipment and put it back when they between clients. So, if your members are lazy assholes, and your trainers won't help either - then finding equipment is nearly impossible.

Bay Club Courtside has THREE weight areas: one with circuit weights, one with pulley weights, and one that has a haphazard mixture of both. There are a couple stands with medicine balls, kettle balls, straps, and bungees, but a complete set is nary to be found. The gym seems to be more weight focused, which is a little 2001. People do all kinds of non-weighted activities now using their own body weight. It's pretty important to get with the times. They do have a couple of TRXs available, but you have to hook them to a pole in the middle of the weight room, or to a weight station. The people who want to use the weights don't like that. And I don't want to be in anyone's way, especially when they are carrying around barbells. Also, have you heard of ViPR? I didn't think so.

There have been numerous fights in the women's locker room about cell phone usage. Not kidding, a couple became screaming matches. Yes, it is annoying when someone gets on their cell phone and has a conversation while you are changing your clothes. But, politely telling them that using their phone is not allowed, and asking them to step into the hall is quite enough. Continuing to yell at them and going off on them in a verbal diatribe just leads to a defensive strike. Also, now that you are both yelling at each other about how awful a human being each of you are - it is even more annoying than the original one-sided phone conversation. Shut it.

I was flipped off in the parking lot. Parking can get tough, but there is no reason to flip someone the bird just because their luck was better than yours. No, lady. You weren't even close to the parking spot when I put my blinker on. And the fact that you are over 60 doesn't bother me either. Get a grip.

The "kids" who work in the cafe have been taught no work ethic. I stood for a good minute in front of the cashier while they changed the register tape, and I didn't get so much as a, "Be right with you." For the money you spend on a sandwich, the people who work in the cafe should have a little hustle and have some inkling about customer service. I know they probably think they should be working in daddy's law office, but they are not. So, give me a salad with a smile, and put the dressing on the side.

I hope the Bay Club turns this place around now that they are in full ownership of it. It's too down-home Los Gatos, which is a bunch of people trying to be something they aren't. Clearly they are putting more time into their hair than into their workouts. It seems to be more of a social place than a place to improve your physical fitness. It's high end, but when you get down to it, there really needs to be a lot of massive improvements made in their equipment, space, and generally their attitudes.


  1. Hey Suzanne, My recommendation to you is stay away from gyms. Its been years since I've had a gym membership and I couldn't be happier. Working out outdoors is the way to go. The only time you really need a gym is when its raining outside and even then you can just set up your trainer in the garage and bike. The Bay Area has soooo much to offer outside and most if not all is free to use. Why be indoors and waste money on a gym?


    1. Agreed, Jimmy. It was such a waste of money. Although, I do miss some weights, which is why I bought the TRX. It was $150 well spent.