Studio fitness in New York is expensive. This is something we all know. Boutique classes can run up to $40 each, which is more than certain gyms charge per month. ClassPass was supposed to solve this problem by offering a monthly pass to a certain number of studios (formerly unlimited), but its pricing has becoming increasingly confusing and its offering less compelling. Fit House aims to tackle this issue. For $99/month, subscribers will have access to the full roster of studios in Manhattan. While currently they only have one location in Soho, they’re planning to open five more all over the city in the near future. And the instructors have taught in some of New York’s best studios, including SLT and The Fhitting Room. They’re currently offering two weeks free for new students, so I bought myself a trial and checked out their Stamina class.
Another week, another new fitness studio. Phorm, offering its own brand of Pilates and Yoga, opened in January near Times Square and Bryant Park. Since it’s only a five-minute walk from my new office, how could I not give it a try? Although Phorm’s space itself was far from my favorite, I got one of the best core conditioning workouts of my life.
A few years ago, I spent a summer in Berlin studying German. I took a four-hour immersion class daily, practicing German speech, reading, and writing with other non-native speakers, mostly southern Europeans. Often, by the end of the day, I was desperate for interaction in English. That’s how I found Bikram Yoga. There was a studio right next to my school, and they offered classes daily in English. My other American friend and I went together, and I began to enjoy extremely hot yoga for reasons beyond easy comprehension of the instructions.
When I came back to New York and joined ClassPass, I continued to attend Bikram Yoga NYC occasionally. Recently, Bikram Yoga NYC has rebranded to become Bode, offering heated Pilates, Vinyasa, and HIIT classes. Since my husband, as a member, has one free guest pass per month, I joined him for Hot HIIT, their class that has received the most buzz. If you didn’t find cardio core conditioning difficult enough, this class will definitely challenge you.
Sometimes it seems like a new fitness studio opens in New York every week — or at least every month. In February, Balance.Yoga.Barre, a hot yoga and barre studio hailing from Oklahoma, made its New York City debut. Offering a free first class, this yoga studio has also been spreading the word by providing deals on Groupon and Gilt City. Since I never say no to a free class, I decided to give them a try. While a nice change from my normal Equinox routine, I feel that Balance.Yoga.Barre may still have a few kinks to work out.
Project by Equinox has had a lot of buzz since it opened last year. Known as a “think tank for fitness,” Project has instructors audition for a teaching spot and demonstrate that they have the entrepreneurial and training chops to execute their ideas. The current roster offers a variety of dance-based, cardio, strength, and yoga classes. Adam Sanford’s The Climb falls into the HIIT/strength category and left me wishing I could make it one of my regulars.