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Old 08-30-2013, 01:33 PM
145 posts, read 206,994 times
Reputation: 67


I am a journalist in the Boston area. I am considering writing an article about how to deter gym locker theft. This discussion will hopefully provide some valuable tips for my story and anyone wanting extra protection.

While locker theft cannot be prevented, there are things that an individual or business can do to make a locker, lock, or business less attractive to the thief.

Some suggestions I've received so far are:

1. Buy a quality lock which is difficult to cut, shim, and pick.
2. Choose a locker that is in a visible location rather than in a little hidden corner.
3. Gym owners might place a few alarmed locks on empty lockers.

Things I've been researching:
1. Whether eye-catching locks get picked/broken into more often than dull ones that blend in?
2. Where in the locker rooms do most thefts take place? Near the entrance, showers, etc.?
3. Which locks are recommended?
4. Has any gym owner tried putting a camera outside the locker room entrance, and did that bother members?

Please add your own suggestions and feel free to discuss.
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Old 08-30-2013, 05:42 PM
Location: Quincy, Mass. (near Boston)
2,050 posts, read 3,461,317 times
Reputation: 1618
At Planet Fitness in Quincy, they post a sign just outside the locker rooms referring to "due to recent thefts, please guard your valuables." Or something to that effect. It was posted the entire time I was a member, over three months.

I'm unsure if there really were recent thefts during that time, but just the fact it was posted permanently may keep members and any potential thieves on alert.
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Old 08-30-2013, 05:53 PM
Location: Georgia, USA
21,496 posts, read 26,089,700 times
Reputation: 26455
How to Make a Locker Alarm | eHow
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Old 08-31-2013, 04:12 AM
538 posts, read 1,042,204 times
Reputation: 452
I am a gym rat as well and I learned many years ago (fortunately by others getting robbed) to never leave any valuable in a gym. Work around it some how. This happens more than most think. Sometimes your credit card is swiped and put back in wallet for identity. This is a sad reality friend.

Cameras in locker rooms is not common and not sure if it is legal. Best not to even have a locker if you can bring the bag with you or keep it in the car/truck.
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Old 08-31-2013, 04:53 AM
4,240 posts, read 3,312,505 times
Reputation: 7111
When I go to my gym, I only take minimally what I need. A small type wallet with license, health plan card and another form of id. I take an old racket-ball canister and place the wallet and cell phone in it, and I carry it at all time in the gym. I wont leave anything in the lockers or in my car just in case (heaven forbid). It's a pain at first to always remember to bring my canister with me, but I am used to it now. It's like second nature.

My gym did have a spate of theft several years ago, but none since then.
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Old 08-31-2013, 05:13 AM
Location: Cambridge, MA
4,730 posts, read 10,931,493 times
Reputation: 6449
There's a "guard your belongings" sign at my Y along with the typical disclaimer that they're not responsible for the loss or theft of anything. Everybody has to "swipe" their membership card to gain access beyond the lobby, and the people staffing the front desk are good at being watchful. But let's not kid ourselves. People with another kind of swiping in mind know to just lie in wait until nobody's looking, then piggyback behind someone who's just opened the door.
I've never had anything stolen from me at a gym, but this is mainly because I've never kept memberships for long and have only recently rejoined one. And it helps to live close by. While the weather stays agreeable I either wear shorts with pockets or put a fanny pack on, for my keys + "plastic" + cell phone, and do my clothes-changing and showering at home. Once colder days are upon us I'll put an old-school Yale combination lock to use. They haven't failed me yet.
As a matter of principle I'd never join any kind of club if cameras were inside the locker room. In my mind that goes beyond sketchy and doesn't guarantee security anyway. Alarms? Yeah, right. When's the last time you ran to your front window when a car alarm sounded on the street, or grabbed everything you could carry when a smoke alarm started screaming? People just groan and tune ''em out.
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Old 09-01-2013, 08:49 AM
Location: Massachusetts
5,944 posts, read 6,742,771 times
Reputation: 4277
I wear my workout clothing to the gym and shower and change at home. I use a high quality heavy lock, the kind you use to lock a gate not the cheapo combination kind and tie the key up on my shoe lace. I wear a thin fanny pack underneath clothing for the essentials. I go to a large gym, so there are always many people and eyes in the locker room at any time, leaving less opportunity for a thief to pull a lock off a locker.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:08 PM
Location: North Jackson
1,867 posts, read 2,974,112 times
Reputation: 2374
What kind of lock or locker allows access to criminals, assuming the locker is locked? Are people getting into locked lockers? How?

The only time I had something stolen from the Oak Park (IL) Y was when I left a locker unlocked (forgot my lock). I don't remember what was stolen, something inconsequential, but I never forgot my lock after that.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:44 PM
7,022 posts, read 5,772,668 times
Reputation: 6963
I keep my valuables (cash, cards, keys) in a small wallet that I can clip to either my leg, arm, or waist, depending on what gym activity I'm doing. The only things I keep in the lockers are towels and smelly gym clothes...nothing worth stealing unless you really need a smelly towel.
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Old 09-01-2013, 03:40 PM
Location: Springfield and brookline MA
1,225 posts, read 2,414,981 times
Reputation: 1195
I lock eveything in my locker with a padlock. There is so much traffic in the locker room that it is rarely empty.

I just can't seem to bring my self to get in my car and drive home all nasty after working out. I need to shower there before getting in my car so I usually have a bag.
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