Now that the unlimited ClassPass rate is close to, if not equal to, Equinox, many fitness consumers are questioning why they wouldn’t just join Equinox. Here are some important factors for you to consider and why I personally chose the boutique fitness scene instead of the fitness empire.
Specialized Fitness verses Convenience
I am not an Equinox enthusiast. Yes, their spaces are luxurious and the unlimited use of Kiehl products in their locker rooms an added bonus. From a convenience factor, they are literally within every two miles- if not every- mile in Manhattan and they are continuously expanding. If I want to hop on the nearest treadmill at almost any time at any place in a spa-like atmosphere with a plush newly washed towel waiting for me to wipe my sweat; sign me up.
But I don’t.
What many don’t know about Equinox is that their instructors are required to sign non-competes. They are not allowed to teach at another club or studio within a two mile radius of Equinox. As Equinox- or something owned by Equinox (i.e. Pure Yoga, Blink Fitness, previously Soulcycle before it went public) – is virtually in every mile in Manhattan, this knocks out pretty much an entire borough where the boutique fitness scene is hoping, as well as areas in Brooklyn, Westchester, Long Island and elsewhere.
What Does This Mean?
There are some very talented Equinox instructors. I am not claiming that there are none. However, when you put such restrictions on people trying to earn a living, people will leave. Talent will go elsewhere. Wouldn’t you?
This is where the boutique fitness studio scene enters; whether it’s The Fit Co or elsewhere, boutique studios specialize in the fitness class in which they provide. We train our instructors so they understand our method and teach accordingly. We are passionate about the type of fitness we do offer and want that to translate to our clients experience and fitness level. Yes, some boutique studios do have their instructors sign non-competes (we do not do this at The Fit Co). But we don’t exist on every block so it is way less restrictive.
Quality verses Quantity
It comes down to what you value most; convenience or quality?
I am not saying Equinox has no quality; I am simply saying the boutique fitness scene- as a whole- offers a higher caliber. Prior to becoming a fitness professional, I faced this choice and I chose to leave Equinox because of the talent drain I saw. That was my choice.
Of course, now as a studio owner, I am biased. I believe it is the quality of the workouts not the quantity you do. It is better for your body, it is better for your mind, and ultimately, if you think of it as quality and not quantity, it is better for your schedule.
That being said, I do believe some level of convenience is certainly important. Without it, working out may feel daunting and without accessibility, we set our clients up for failure in their fitness goals. I designed The Fit Co with this in mind; we offer a range of quality workouts throughout the day so you can have access to a range of quality, time efficient workouts. You don’t need to come every day; by coming a few times a week and working hard when you are here, you will see and feel a difference.
For The Boutique Studio Scene to Succeed….
We need you. Without clients, it does not matter how good our product is, or what community we have created. We are smaller, often independently owned, and given our smaller size, know our clients. We hear our clients direct, and often make decisions based on first hand feedback received. By offering a quality, unique and more personalized service, whether you stay on ClassPass or choose a studio and purchases packages direct, or a combination of both, we hope you continue to support the boutique fitness studios.