Bally Total Fitness Online Store – One Stop Shopping For All Your Sporting Needs!
Jun 27, 2003 (Updated Sep 27, 2004)
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Bally Total Fitness Centers seem to be popping up all over the place. Personally, I don't care for the facilities or the snooty and rude personnel and I'm sure that had something to do with me never visiting the Bally Online Store. I didn't expect it to have anything but the Bally line of supplements and gear but I was pleasantly surprised when Google pointed me to the site for a sport bra I had been looking for. Once there I was in awe of the site. It was streamline and easy to navigate, had more products than I ever imagined and overall the prices were comparable to the sport sites I hit on a regular basis. The 30 day return policy, fair shipping charges and selection are what hooked me - I still dislike the Bally Fitness Centers but have to admit that the online site had me blown away.
If you are into any type of sport, are a gym rat or just like to keep in shape, chances are you'll find more than a few things to interest you at the site. Almost all of the products that are featured at the site have a full color photo, description, shipping information, warranty information and price listed on one page. The sections are broken up into basics groups, but it isnt until you start looking in the sub-sections that you get to see the great deals, unique items and things you might not expect a sport site to have first aid kits, instructional books and tapes, clothing, shoes and even hiking and camping gear. Shopping for sport related goods doesn't get any easier than this. If you get lost within the site, just click the Bally logo to go back to the main page. The shopping cart shows you all of your selected items and allows you to edit it at any time.
What They Stock
I was really impressed with the amount of sections that Bally's had to check out. I expected free weights, some clothing, their supplement line and a few odds and ends - what I found were tons of different sporting lines [soccer, tennis, golf, basketball etc] and manufacturers like Oxygen, Huffy, Weider, Champion, Wilson and Reebok. To say that they have a wide variety of goods is a total understatement - and the prices aren't all that bad either. This is the type of site that you literally get sucked into - there are so many sections to look at and then there are smaller, more detailed sub-sections. The first time I hit the site I think I spent the better part of an hour looking around, I never knew that Bally had such an impressive store. As much as I knock their fitness centers and supplement line, I have no problem saying that their online site is colossal yet extremely easy to navigate.
Their sport supplement section is a little on the limited side with their bars being sold only by the box. That's great if you are familiar with the flavor or type of bar, but if you aren't you are taking a risk buying them in bulk. I wasn't able to find the Otomix shoe that I was looking for, but I did come across some shoes for the boys and the Hi-Tek Magnums that my brother had been looking for. Some of the hidden gems of the site include swimming gear, ice skates, dart boards, climbing equipment, cheerleading uniforms, professional sports gear and about a thousand other titles and topics. Chances are if it is sport related - you will be able to find it at the site. If you don't see something listed on the main page, be sure to click the "more sports" link at the bottom or use the search engine.
I went there when Google gave me several returns on my search for a particular sport bra - the Champion Jogbra Underwire Full Support Sport Bra. Normally I don't wear anything with an underwire but this style and design fit me best for aerobics and the one that I had was on its last leg. The Bally store had it for six dollars less than any other online site and also had several others from the Jogbra line that I had been wanting to check out. While I was there I also picked up a daypack, a knee brace and a few hot / cold packs. Since my first purchase I've gone back for a few more sport bras and some gym clothes and I still haven't managed to make my way through the entire site. I know that I'll be using the site this holiday season to get gifts for my brother and "the guys" at the gym - clothing, dartboards and socks are the first of many things that come to mind.
You are given a 30 day money back guarantee on almost everything that is sold at the site. DVD's, tapes and other media items can only be exchanged if they are still sealed or are defective. I've never had to return anything that I've ordered so I don't know how long they take to credit things back to our credit card but I'd assume that one or two billing cycles would be the norm. Your best bet is to contact the customer service center about making a return to ensure that your item is processed correctly and you get the full amount of the purchase back. If you return something that isn't defective you won't be able to get the shipping and handling fee back but if it is defective they will ship out a replacement at no extra cost to you.
The Bally Online Store accepts MasterCard, Visa, Discover Card and American Express. You can also redeem an online gift certificate when processing your order. They do not do C.O.D.'s, personal checks or money orders. If you cannot pay by credit card [or a debit card with a MasterCard or Visa logo] please call customer service to inquire about other options that may be available. I've used both MasterCard and Visa for purchases and have never had a problem with processing, billing or verification.
7601 Trade Port Drive
Louisville, KY 40258
 621 - 4907
The best way to get in contact with someone from the site it to use the automated form located in the customer service section. This will allow you to enter all the necessary information, order number, questions and comments etc. This might seem a little impersonal but it is the quickest way to get an answer to a question or inquire about your order. The toll free number is great if you have a little time to kill, sometimes their operators can get a little busy.
Items are shipped via the most cost effective manner unless otherwise specified when you are checking out. You can upgrade to Three Day, Two Day or Next Day shipping as long as you pay the cost. Books, DVD's and other media are shipping via Media Mail through the USPS with other items shipping out Priority Mail or UPS. Larger items may require special delivery methods or the use of a freight carrier. All of the costs and fees are available before you process your order and if you have any questions, call the toll free customer service number for more help. It's better to take five minute to make the call then it is to arrange to send something back and eat the shipping fees. My orders all arrived on time or before the date that was given in the 'your order has shipped' email. The shipping fees were lower than what I expected and this is one of the main reasons why I'll continue to come back to the site. Kentucky and Pennsylvania residents will have to pay a state sales tax on their orders but all other states are tax free [for now at least].
The Bottom Line
As I said in the beginning of this review, I wasn't prepared to be this impressed with the Bally Online Store. The prices, for the most part, are comparable to other similar sites with some products being more, others less. It helps to know a little about the products and what other sites sell them at and if there are any deals or coupons available. You can subscribe to the free newsletter to advanced notices of sales and receive coupon codes with new issues arriving about once every two weeks. So far I havent been disappointed with anything that Ive ordered and the packages arrived on time or a day or two ahead of schedule. If you are a sports enthusiast, soccer mom or just someone that hits the gym this is a site that you need to check out. Customer service, when Ive had to contact them, have been quick to answer questions via the online automated form and have always made sure that I received all the information I requested. As much as Ive bashed Bally in the past, I have no complaints about their online store, items they sell or things that Ive purchased.
thanks for the visit!
^V^ Freak ^V^
© 2003 Freak369
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What product did you purchase or try to purchase? Clothing, gifts, sport related items.