A number of fitness brands in Manhattan have tried to introduce half-and-half classes that pair spinning with another discipline like weight training or yoga. But so far, most of them have failed to gain traction.
BFX may just change that at its expansive, swanky new Financial District studio, which opened this week and is home to a brand-new, forward-thinking Fusion class format.
It’s the second New York City location for the boutique brand, owned by New York Sports Club parent company Town Sports International. The first one debuted in Chelsea in June of 2014—and everything about BFX FiDi is bigger and splashier than the original.
That includes a curved marble staircase leading up to check-in, soaring ceilings and windows throughout the club, seriously spacious locker rooms, and a long hallway that actually encourages lingering, with comfy benches, iPads, and outlets so you can charge your phone before a treadmill session.
But the biggest change is in the Ride Republic studio, where the stadium-style Spinning set-up shares an area for functional strength training, with stations stocked with TRXs, sand bags, and more.
It’s designed specifically for the Fusion format, created by star trainer Kira Stokes, and the class feels reminiscent of Barry’s Bootcamp, with spin bikes instead of treadmills and functional moves instead of bicep curls. In other words, half the class tackles intervals by pedaling, while the other half is busy with sand-bag rows and squats, and you switch half way through.
My class was super challenging, especially since the floor work included explosive cardio, like speed skaters and slams, so that by the time I got on the bike, my muscles were already on fire. (Others started on the bikes and moved to the floor.)
The studio is still working on making simultaneous cuing of the two groups seamless, but it was pretty smooth considering I was in the very first class ever. Of course, transitions will always be a little bit tricky, since bike set-up involves seat and handlebar adjusting get started. To help, BFX has two instructors in the room, and the floor exercises are projected onto the wall, so you can always look up for guidance if you forget what’s next or miss a cue.
In addition to Fusion, the studio will offer its other signature classes like Ride, Burn, and Barre, as well as an expanded Box and Bell class (with, wait for it…heavy bag boxing and kettlebells), and its Private Access program.
The team even enlisted famed fitness DJ Scott Melker to create playlists for the studio, so if all else fails, you can just move your muscles to the music. —Lisa Elaine Held
BFX Fidi, $32 per class, 30 Broad St., at Exchange Pl., Financial District, New York, NY, 10004, 212-232-0050, www.bfxstudio.com
(Photos: Anthony Collins; The entrance, Lisa Elaine Held for Well+Good)