There’s only so much the StairMaster can do for your butt after years of climbing steps to nowhere. Stagnant workout routines are definitely a First-World problem, and one from which many Americans desperately suffered — until they discovered ClassPass.
Sure, you would do yoga here and there, but even packages that are supposed to give you some type of deal run at least $17 a class. Do that three times a week and you’re looking at $200 monthly for Chaturanga’s, and that’s without factoring in your overpriced Lululemon gear.
With the ClassPass app, you can pay $99 a month to attend 79 studios in Miami. The catch: You can go to the same studio only up to three times. Still, with most of these studios charging $25 for classes, you’re practically making your money back with just one studio.
Because the early bird gets the worm, classes are available as early as 5:30 a.m. and as late as 11 p.m. What does that mean? No more excuses for why you stayed home and watched The Voice instead of raising your heartbeat and sweating it out.
ClassPass is available in 30 cities (including all the major metropolitan areas). That means that you don't have an excuse to skip your workout routine while traveling because you have access to every studio in every city. Yep, the future of fitness is here.
But let’s talk Miami, because that’s what’s important here. One of the newer cities to launch, in December, Miami was deemed a natural fit because of its population of beautiful people and commitment to skimpy clothing. “People in Miami are living healthier lives, more active lives, so it was a good lifestyle alignment there,” says head of marketing Alex Do. "We choose our cities based on density of studios and availability of group fitness studios since we want to offer the most and the best, so we knew there was an opportunity in Miami to aggregate all these studios and offer something compelling for the locals.”
Indeed, participating studios include some of the hottest in town, including Green Monkey, FlyWheel, JetSet, and Vixen. Want to get your butt kicked? Legacy Fit (which New Times named best gym of 2014) is also on the app, as are a couple of CrossFit locations.
Most recently, ClassPass has even added gym time at Crunch Fitness, giving you an hour of workout time at your leisure. According to Do, the plan is to constantly add more studios as well as introduce new types of workouts. That's where the true benefit of ClassPass lies – in changing up and introducing your body to things you’ve never done before, like pole dancing, Pilates, aerial yoga, and barre.
Of course, not all studios are created equal or appeal to every kind of person — that’s why variety is the spice of life (and why you have locations to choose from). But it gives you a way to discover what you like, what you like less but should still do because it’s good for you, and what you hate. As for the criteria, ClassPass specializes in boutique fitness studios that offer group classes. “We go there first and choose studios that are a bit more elevated,” Do says. “The studio itself has to be in good condition. Branding of studio has to be very professional. Experience and setting are also really important to us because we want them all to be in the same genre, and we try to choose studios that we know are popular.”
My favorites have been Green Monkey (I was a student there before ClassPass), the Pilates Place, Pilathon, Exhale, FlyWheel (for FlyBarre, because spinning is hell for me), and Bala Vinyasa. Not-so-favorites are Pure Barre (the environment is a bit stuffy) and JetSet Pilates. Though the latter is an intense workout for sure (think Pilates on steroids), instructors go through about two weeks of training but really take no time to tell you whether you’re doing something right, wrong, or ask anyone in the class about their level of practice. Opinions are biased, though, and one woman’s fitness nightmare might very well be another one's saving grace.
I've been gladly giving my money to ClassPass for three months, but I've yet to work my way through all of the studios offered. I have, however, come up with a regular weekly routine schedule that makes the juice worth the squeeze and fits into my schedule. The app makes this fairly easy because it gives an hourly breakdown of what's available and lets you register right from your phone. Registered for a class and can't make it? There’s a cancellation policy (enforced by the studio), but ClassPass recently changed it from 24 hours to 12 hours. “We heard feedback from people that a lot can happen in 24 hours,” Do says. “Plans can change and have unforeseen obstacles, so we wanted to appease our customers and really listen to them, as well as be more in line with the policy of the studios, which are in many cases 12 hours. The response we’ve gotten has been tremendous.”
And though the cancellation window is 12 hours, booking classes can be done up to the last minute. Because I'm afraid of commitment (even to a fitness class), I often find myself signing up for a 3:30 p.m. class at 3:15 p.m. A couple of studios will block out their class two hours before the start time, but if you call and ask if there's space, they’ll gladly let you in. In other words, working out has never been so easy.
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