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Leotard-clad women storm out of aerobics class

PUBLISHED: 10:29 16 January 2009 | UPDATED: 15:49 07 September 2010

Robyn Rosen AN entire class of leotard-clad women stormed out of a Crouch End gym in a protest against shortened and cancelled classes. The 27 members of Virgin Active in Tottenham Lane were so enraged that their weekly legs, bums and tums class had been

Robyn Rosen

AN entire class of leotard-clad women stormed out of a Crouch End gym in a protest against shortened and cancelled classes.

The 27 members of Virgin Active in Tottenham Lane were so enraged that their weekly legs, bums and tums class had been shortened from one hour to 45 minutes that they walked out of the class and into the manager's office with a list of complaints.

Ilana Wegrzyn has been a member of the gym since it opened eight years ago. But she joined her fellow members in Thursday's walkout.

"There has been a growing dissatisfaction since September with the changes they have made to classes," she said.

"Thursday was the climax. It was a very popular class that they shortened.

"We piled into the manager's office but she gave no good answers. No one felt satisfied or listened to."

The gym, formerly Holmes Place and taken over by Virgin Active two years ago, charges members up to £68 per month.

"It's not just about that class," Ms Wegrzyn, of Wolseley Road, added.

"They have axed other classes and are getting rid of the freelance teachers, replacing them with their own staff.

"The feeling is that they are trying to maximise profits.

"We are paying the same fees but not getting the classes we want. They are going corporate and only care about money.

"They have not been listening to their members' complaints. We have spoken to the club manager, the head office and filled out dozens of complaint cards. We are not getting our money's worth.

"Their standards have done down. I'm sure its going to stop some people going back to that gym.

A spokeswoman from Virgin Active said: "In response to member feedback and to cater as best as possible to our members needs Virgin Active changes its timetables every quarter to include new classes and meet member demand.

"If necessary classes are moved around in order to enable the widest variety of offerings for members.

"At the Crouch End club in January, one class was removed from the timetable but in its place three additional holistic programmes as well as two high energy aerobic classes were added to accommodate the popularity of this kind of class.

"Any other changes have been made to improve the existing timetable and provide as much as possible for the needs of all members.

"Virgin Active values member feedback greatly and looks to providing a solution for all complaints as and when they arise.


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