Sorry I didn't see your topic until today!
I am a Curves mini success story. I joined on Nov. 29, 2000, when they first opened in our town. I have lost 9.5 pounds and 7.5 inches since then, and I am very pleased with my results.
As for the safety aspect, our Curves is very good about teaching proper form (they're always watching!
) and cool down is emphasized as well. For warmup, they simply recommend that you "take it easy" for the first few stations. I guess it probably varies from franchise to franchise. Anyway, both the staff and the patrons are watching themselves, and if the staff member doesn't catch someone doing something wrong, usually the other patrons will.
Anyway, I love my Curves. Perhaps there's another one near you that has better staffing?