Gold’s Gym Built for Greatness and Legacy. By Gold’s.

Gold's Gym

A brief overview of Gold’s Gym

Gold’s Gym International, Inc. is an American company of co-ed exercise facilities (often referred to as gyms) founded in Venice Beach, California, by Joe Gold. Each gym provides a selection of cardio and strength training equipment and group exercise programs. Its headquarters have now moved to Dallas.

History of the company

Before the contemporary fitness club existed, Joe Gold built the first Gold’s Gym in Venice Beach, California, in August 1965. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Dave Draper visited the “Mecca of bodybuilding” and used its handmade equipment.

From Gold to Iron Pumping

When Bud Danites, a well-known antique dealer, and jeweler Dave Saxe purchased Gold’s faltering Gym in 1970, it needed help. As co-owners, they managed the Gym for over two years before realizing that they couldn’t keep it running and decided to reopen the space as an antique store.

They sold it to Ken Sprague, a regular gym-goer, who bought it at the end of 1971, saving Gold’s for use as a gym as Gold’s first owner to sponsor and host bodybuilding contests, Sprague’s promotional abilities and connections in the film industry aided in raising the bar for the restaurant.

Sprague’s savvy, telling George Butler that he would paint the windows over to minimize backlight, and allowing Butler to mount a lighting grid to the inside ceiling, made Gold’s Gym the primary location for filming Pumping Iron (1977), which brought attention not only to the Gym itself but also to bodybuilding and physique in general, as a result.

As a result of the film’s premiere and Sprague’s sponsorship of the 1977 Mr. America contest and Mr. America Day parade, Gold’s Gym’s prominence rose even higher.

There were more requests for interviews for Mr. America in 1977 than there were for the Academy Awards. By the time Sprague sold Gold’s Gym in 1979, it was the world’s most renowned Gym. Gold’s Gym is regarded as a bodybuilding institution and has attained cult status today.

Gold's Gym

Image, franchising, and subsequent ownership

Peter Grymkowski (a Mr. World bodybuilding winner) and his partners operated Gold’s Gym from 1979 until 1999. After two years of ownership, it took them six years to expand from their first 5,500-square-foot facility to a 60,000 square-foot structure.

When Gold’s Gym was sold to Brockway Moran & Partners in 1999, his brother, Grymkowski, took over as licensing director and was instrumental in expanding the brand’s presence from one location to over 534 throughout the United States and abroad.

TRT Holdings purchased Gold’s Gym in 2004 from another private equity company. August 2020 marks the acquisition of Gold’s by German fitness business RSG Group.

When Gold’s Gym opened its doors in 1980, it was one of the earliest franchising organizations in the health and fitness sector.

The corporation licenses its brand to various items, including workout gear and clothes. Ric Drasin, a professional wrestler and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s training partner, drew the first Gold’s Gym emblem in 1973, depicting a bald weightlifter grasping a barbell.

Famous people who have worked out at Gold’s Gym include Jessica Alba and Jodie Foster and actors Morgan Freeman and Dwayne Johnson. Other famous people who have worked out there include Jim Morrison, Kevin Keanu Reeves, and Tiger Woods. ESPN has identified the original Gold’s Gym in Venice Beach as one of the most prominent sports arenas in the world.

Information about the company

Privately held Gold’s Gym operates. After acquiring it from its previous owner, TRT Holdings purchased it from Brockway Moran & Partners, a private equity group, for $158 million in 2004. Brockway Moran paid more than $50 million for the firm in 1999. Dallas is home to the corporate headquarters.

One hundred eighty international franchise locations have been established since 1985, including sites in Russia, India, Costa Rica, Japan, and countries in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Germany, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Mexico.

The company has also expanded its global franchising program to include nearly 180 gyms in countries like the Philippines and the United Kingdom.

In 2016, a total of 58 new Gold’s Gym facilities were opened across the globe. A branch was established in Amman, Jordan, in 2017 for the first time.

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Promotion of health and well-being at work

Gold’s Gym provides a global corporate wellness program that includes more than 3000 business partners, including Home Depot, Bank of America, Whataburger, and Union Pacific, among many others.

Health and fitness regimens tailored to the needs of the company’s workers around the country are available as part of the corporate sales and wellness program.

At Gold’s, you may sign up for month-to-month memberships with the AARP, and it is also the official health club of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of America. Gold’s is now allowing students to enroll online.

The year 2020 will be the year of bankruptcy.

GGI Holdings, LLC (Gold’s Gym) and 14 other associated creditors filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas on May 4, 2020. Case No. 20-31318 has been sought by the debtors for joint administration.

In March 2020, the COVID-19 epidemic forced Gold’s to shut its U.S. facilities temporarily. In April, the firm announced that it would be closing 30 of its stores permanently. About 10% of the almost 700 sites held by Gold’s Gym will be affected by the bankruptcy case, with a reemergence date of August 2020.

RSG Group GmbH, which also owns the McFit fitness brand, purchased Gold’s in August 2020.

What’s going on now?

Gold’s Gym represents six continents. The J.D. Power Health and Fitness Center Satisfaction Report ranked Gold’s Gym first in 2015 and 2016.

To help customers stay on track with their fitness goals, Gold’s Gym has created GOLD’S AMP, an app that provides a virtual personal trainer. Thousands of music mixes and various workouts conducted by Gold’s Gym trainers are included.

In July 2020, Gold’s Gym had 61 company-owned locations and more than 600 franchise locations.

Gold’s Gym Challenge

Members of Gold’s Gym may participate in a 12-week body transformation challenge called the Gold’s Gym Challenge.

Participants began the Challenge in January by taking their first measurements and taking their first photos. Final measurements and pictures are born 12 weeks later to record the outcomes. Each participating Gold’s Gym selects its local champions to be eligible for the national prize pool.

In addition to PopSugar, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and Women’s Health, Gold’s Gym Challenge champions have been featured in several publications.

Golds Gym Equipment

Keep your fitness regimen strong and join our Trainers from around the globe with unlimited access to Gold’s Gym on-demand video exercises.

Whether you’re a member or not, our objective is to give digital exercise solutions to keep your fitness journey continuing everywhere you are.

Access Gold’s Gym exercises anywhere you are, whenever you want – for free.

Start for free

How much is Gold’s Gym Monthly?

Club for singles
All memberships may demand the payment of the first and final month’s dues at the time of signing up. After signing up, you’ll pay a $49 annual fee. Until further notice, some facilities are unavailable owing to COVID State Restrictions on their use. Depending on the location and level of membership, amenities may differ.
Month-to-month payments
Fees for One-Time Enrollment (Single Club): $1.00
Cost Per Month For One Individual (Single Club): $49.95
One-Time Cancellation Fee (Single Club): $0.00
More than one club
First and final month fees may be needed for all memberships at the time of enrollment. After signing up, you’ll pay a $49 annual fee. Until further notice, some facilities are unavailable owing to COVID State Restrictions on their use. Depending on the location and level of membership, amenities may differ.
Month-to-month payments
(One Person) (Multi-Club) Enrollment Fee: $59.00
A recurring monthly fee for a single user is: $54.95
One-Time Cancellation Fee (Multi-Club): $0.00
Members of the Platinum Club
First and final month fees may be needed for all memberships at the time of enrollment. After signing up, you’ll pay a $49 annual fee. Until further notice, some facilities are unavailable owing to COVID State Restrictions on their use. Depending on the location and level of membership, amenities may differ.
Month-to-month payments
(Platinum Club) One-Person Enrollment Fee: $0.00
Cost Per Month For One Individual (Platinum Club): $59.99
One-Time Cancellation Fee (Platinum Club): $0.00

What happened to Gold’s gym?

On Monday, gold’s Gym filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, becoming the latest firm to consider reorganization amid coronavirus-related business interruptions. 

“We want to make 100 percent clear that Gold’s Gym is not going out of business,” President and CEO Adam Zeitsiff stated in a news statement. In the future, “we’ll continue to develop and build our digital business, our licensing program, and our global presence as we concentrate on supporting our millions of members worldwide.”
The firm pointed to problems brought on by the coronavirus outbreak and said it aimed to reemerge from bankruptcy procedures by August 1.

It claimed the bankruptcy petition would impact just company-owned shops, which comprise around 10 percent of the company’s roughly 700 sites throughout the globe.

In March, the gym company was forced to temporarily shut sites throughout the US in response to states’ limitations on companies. In April, it said it would shutter 30 company-owned stores for good.

In a recent interview with Business Insider, Zeitsiff explained the company’s intentions to reopen gyms under revised guidelines, including limited capacity and increased cleaning processes.

“We have been working with our landlords to guarantee that the remaining corporate-owned gyms reopen stronger than ever coming out of this epidemic,” the firm said in a statement on Monday.

“There is no connection to any of our locally owned franchise gyms, nor will the filing affect our licensing business, and we will continue to support our system of almost 700 clubs throughout the globe as usual.

While the COVID-19 epidemic clearly affected our company-owned gym activities, we think the filing will have no additional effect on present operations.”

Why is Gold’s gym so famous?

Joe Gold, a former bodybuilder and US Marine started a gym in Venice, California, in 1965 as a place for himself and his buddies to work out together.

Every bodybuilder worth their salt was invited to join Joe’s gym for $60 a year, which Joe kept low by constructing his gym equipment and cutting down on the heating.
Unbeknownst to Joe, his little gym would go on to become a household name in the world of fitness.

Since the early 1950s, bodybuilders from all over the world have traveled to Venice Beach, California, to take part in the burgeoning bodybuilding scene. The Santa Monica Pier was formerly the go-to gym for want tobe muscular guys back in the day.

Lifters battled over free weights, rings, dip, and chin-up bars on a wooden platform. Legends like Steve Reeves often trained in Santa Monica. Things began to shift in 1959, though.

The Santa Monica City Council voted to remove weights off the beach after a small group of bodybuilders accused the council of sexual misbehavior. The decision to ban bodybuilders from the beach and confine them to modest inside gyms didn’t improve things.

The Dungeon, Wilshire, and Muscle Beach Gym were just a few surrounding gyms where bodybuilders reluctantly found themselves. One bodybuilder was dissatisfied with the available variety of gyms.

His former Santa Monica comrades, Joe Gold, decided to create their training facility in 1965. Gold, a real estate specialist, had accumulated many coastal homes at a low price by this time. Joe quickly decided to turn one of his Pacific Avenue homes into a gym.

Gold had made an excellent choice of place. Lifters in Santa Monica were Joe’s first customers, and when word spread across Venice that Gold was establishing an entire training facility, the weightlifters there couldn’t control their enthusiasm. One such example is Dick Tyler’s essay from August 1965;

Here’s huge news to all the BIG guys reading this column. Well-known California muscle guy Joe Gold will soon be launching a gym at 1006 Pacific Ave. in Venice. Venice is merely a stone’s throw from legendary Muscle Beach for those of you who now know. Joe, who owns some natural land hereabouts, is constructing the gym from the ground up. Nothing “made over” for Joe. Now, this is going to be a gym for males. No fancy carpets or chrome — just simple old-fashioned weights and the finest gear you ever saw.


How’s this for dumbbells? The gym will contain two complete sets of dumbbells running from 10 lbs. to 80lbs. in five-pound leaps. From then, they’ll advance to 150 lbs. by tens. Already Joe has equipment created to order for the experts. Joe is a Weider guy, and you can bet your bottom dollar that this will be a hotbed of training for Southern California strong men. Co-managing will be ole Zabo Koszewski himself. How can they miss? Those not already here in “Sunsville” best make Gold’s gym a tourist attraction.

Tyler’s forecasts that the gym will be a hotbed of training proved to be accurate. Within five years, Gold’s had a genuine who’s who of the bodybuilding industry with luminaries like Zane, Arnold, and Franco all frequent attendance, but as the gym got more famous, its owner became increasingly frustrated. The gym was a money hole.
In 1970, Joe Gold sold the gym for $50,000 and joined a merchant marine.

Gold's Gym
Gold’s Gym

Gold’s Gym schedule

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Customers have complained about Gold’s Gym franchisees operating dishonestly and unethically. Customers have complained about not being able to cancel or relocate their accounts, not having their advertised bargains recognized, experiencing payment issues, having their contract terms illegally changed, and more.

After signing a contract with a Gold’s Gym in Provo, Utah, in 1999, the Gym was sued for fraud in 2006 for reneging on the agreement.

On February 10, 2017, the billing processor for the gyms, Paramount Acceptance, and 26 companies under the VASA Fitness name (including new gyms since 2014) were served with a consumer class action lawsuit with numerous causes of action, including fraudulent misrepresentation, violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, and violations of the Utah Consumer Sales Practices Act.

On this date, the exact allegations of fraud surfaced again in 2017. The suit was made public by the plaintiff.

The Utah Supreme Court confirmed a judgment to deny Gold’s Gym attorney fees, even though Gold’s Gym won the underlying case in St. George 10 years ago. Chambers v. Gold’s Gym International, Inc., 2020 U.S.

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