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Boutique Fitness Studios Are Killing Indie Gyms in NYC

Image courtesy of Cyc
Image courtesy of Cyc

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Shunning your regular gym membership in favor of Flywheel? You're edging the former out of business. A Forbes article claims that the popularity of boutique fitness classes (plus high-end gyms like Equinox) are shutting down independently-owned gyms.

The article cites Complete Body in Flatiron as "among the last of its kind" of the city's small gyms, and owner Alex Reznik has been forced to adapt by hosting brands like 305 Fitness and charging rent by the hour. He's surrounded by neighborhood studios like Exhale, Soulcycle, Flywheel, Swerve Fitness, and The Movement.

Meanwhile, DavidBartonGym pulled what's proving to be the smartest move of all by bringing in the Wisconsin-originated Cyc to its studio. Since the small boutique has the established fitness house to support its operations, classes are only $25 per session (and $20 for DavidBartonGym members)—much less than the $34 that Soulcycle charges.

It's a win for the gym, too: "They are already covering 12% of our total rent and we are only 8 months into the deal," CEO Howard Brodsky told the website. DavidBartonGym plans to open four more Cyc studios in existing locations.

Article author Nate Hindman is the founder and CEO of One Day Gym Pass, a forthcoming app that will let you book day passes at fitness spots ranging from Blink Fitness to Tone House for a fraction of their regular prices.
· The Race to Become Boutique: The Health Club Dilemma [Forbes]
· How Much Do You Spend a Year on Your Fitness Regime? [Racked NY]
· Boutique Fitness Classes Inching Closer to $40 a Pop [Racked NY]