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RAC buyout prompts members, instructors to jump ship

Henrietta, N.Y. - Daniel Maffia's class at the Rochester Athletic Club in Greece last week got a little rowdy and not because of the workout, it was because Maffia wasn't allowed to teach.

Many of the members dropped their equipment right on the floor and I had about 25 members walk out of the room, said former RAC fitness instructor Daniel Maffia said.

Maffia was an instructor for RAC for three years.

He told 13WHAM News that he was told when LA Fitness bought the facilities, the classes he taught would stay the same - even his pay, but he says that wasn't the case.

We were told to sign paperwork that said we would get paid a lesser amount than we were promise. They said they would change it in the system later, Maffia said.

Maffia said he felt uncomfortable with that so he didn't sign and was told someone else would teach his class until he signed that paperwork.

Paperwork he says didnt necessarily guarantee him a job.

I was simply told to reapply for a position to be considered for employment, Maffia said.

 That struck a nerve with members like Candace Colon.

Colon is a longtime member of RAC for women.

She said she wont be joining LA Fitness and will hold on to her current membership.

LA Fitness only bought co-ed RAC centers.

We were basically lied to about the classes and the instructors and then everything changed within a day, Colon said.

In my opinion it's one of those big corporations coming in to take over something that's a local business,  a place where people have more so, have turned it into a family connection, former RAC instructor and member Justin DeMartin said.

DeMartin and Colon says that connection will continue for this tight knit group.

They followed Maffia to Bounce Aerobics, where hes now teaching classes.

My biggest concern with the new year coming, that members will be very much so affected by this because they were thrown into this, Maffia said.

LA Fitness finalized a deal last week to buy co-ed RAC facilities.


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Washington Times