For one thing, Wimberly’s signature workouts are so engaging and effective, they started drawing waitlists weeks before the studio's July 7 soft-opening date. (He's been testing them at a 10-person pop-up studio in Hollywood for the past year—oh, and on celebs such as Kate Hudson and Selma Blair.)
The trainer's beloved 123STACK format features 10 minutes of crunch-free core work, 20 minutes of resistance training, and 30 minutes of cycling. There will also be 45-minute classes that take place solely in the weight room and on the bike, respectively. Wimberly also just debuted a stretching class that starts with foam rolling and moves into long, static holds. (This is kind of a big deal: While group recovery is now big on the NYC fitness scene, it’s still relatively rare on the West Coast.)
“Every class, except STR3TCH, starts with 10 minutes of core,” explains Wimberly. “When you start with core activation, you’re going to burn more calories during the workout because your core is engaged. And weight training before cardio is the best way to burn fat and promote lean muscle.” Right now, there are 46 classes a week to choose from: Ten taught by the sunshine-y Wimberly himself, the rest helmed by top talent including ex-Body By Simone instructor Erica Hood and Natalie Raitano, a former master trainer at Barry’s Bootcamp.
The space itself is also worth a double-take. At 5,000 square feet, The Wall is the largest boutique fitness studio in the city of LA. The sprawling lobby/café/retail space is a mixture of industrial and glam, with concrete floors, gold bar stools, and lightning-bolt chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. It also has 1,200-square-foot workout rooms: one open-plan, for the resistance training and stretch classes, and a cycling studio with 43 custom-designed bikes, also the biggest of its kind in town.
“It’s a full experience that you move through—each room has different lighting and visuals,” says Wimberly, who’s not only one of the most visionary trainers in the city but also one of the most genuine and charming. (And, um, there’s a reason Well+Good once called him “the Ken doll of the fitness world.”) “Our aesthetic is very New York—I lived there for much of my adult life, so I like that fashion look.”
Every last detail was considered, from the trademarked crosshatch pattern that covers the studios’ textured walls to the bespoke fragrance that wafts through the air filters and emanates from the exclusive line of clean bath and body products found in the showers. Specially designed heart-rate monitors track your stats in class, syncing up to an app that allows you to chat with your trainers and earn points for free stuff. (Oh, and if you buy your own monitor, it automatically checks you in the second you walk through the door—genius, right?) This is also the first-ever registered green fitness business in LA, free from plastic water bottles, paper receipts, and toxic cleaning products and building materials.
While the LA HQ has been two years in the making, Wimberly’s not taking any breaks after opening day—he’s already seeking out locations for an equally massive New York City space and hopes to have a lease signed by the end of the year. (Flatiron and Tribeca are at the top of his list.) After that? Either Chicago or Miami.
“It’s not going to be a studio that’s in every city in America—it will stay metropolitan, upscale, more luxury,” says Wimberly, who’s doing this all with the help of a single private investor from the medical industry. “In fitness, I think you either go mass and it’s really accessible and toned-down when it comes to marketing, or you go the total opposite—high-end all the way. Neither one is better or worse, but we’re going luxe. It’s more important to me to make sure we create gorgeous studios that are so special, they're worth traveling for.”
You might even call them dream houses.
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