A set of 58 shiny, new bikes recently made their Boston debut. Clad in black, grey, and yellow, early risers were eager to take their seats and lock into the stationary fleet.
At 5:30 a.m. on Wednesday, this set of Bostonians was the first to find its “Soul” at the opening of the new Back Bay SoulCycle studio at 500 Boylston St.
“[We’re] always looking to open in active and vibrant communities like Boston,” SoulCycle’s PR coordinator Kristyn Clark said. After opening a studio in Chestnut Hill in March 2014, the first in the Boston area, the city’s SoulCycle community began to build. “We couldn’t be more excited to expand our footprint in Boston,” she said. “First stop—Back Bay!”
Clark explained that in addition to toning muscles and burning calories, the class is designed to benefit the mind through mental and emotional release. “Instructors deliver inspirational messages that leave you feeling stronger and more powerful after every ride,” she said.
According to its website, SoulCycle believes that fitness can be joyful. “We climb, we jog, we sprint, we dance, we set our intention, and we break through boundaries,” the website says. The activity is a fat-burning, full-body workout that includes hand weights as well as choreography aimed to tone core muscles. The company believes that its workout does not just help improve one’s physique, but also one’s mind.
Clark dispelled the misconception that SoulCycle is only for one type of person, noting that men and women, old and young, athletes and non-athletes alike can all “find their soul” in the studio. “Our youngest rider is 12 years old and our oldest is 80,” she said. “We see people from all walks of life.”
One of the company’s largest target clientele is young adults, and many Boston College students frequent the company’s Chestnut Hill studio.
Izzy Fuchs, MCAS ’18, started attending classes at SoulCycle after she stopped rowing crew due to medical reasons. Fuchs was instantly hooked due to the class’s team atmosphere. “It was exactly the athletic, team-bonding experience I was looking for,” she said. Fuchs tries to go to the studio in Chestnut Hill between two and three times per week to recharge and clear her head between classes.
Although Mary Royer, LSOE ’17, enjoys the convenience and free cost of attendance of spin classes at the Flynn Recreation Complex on campus, she prefers attending classes at SoulCycle. “It’s just a very different experience as compared to traditional spinning, so the two cannot really be compared,” she said. “It depends on what you’re looking for on any given day.”
Royer enjoys the style and organization of the classes that SoulCycle offers. “The workout itself is intense and difficult, but the atmosphere, music, and instructors are enough to distract you from how much you’re sweating,” she said. She believes that the workout is a unique experience, and said she has not met anyone who did not immediately fall in love with the workout after his or her first class.
Like many BC students, Royer prefers the convenience of SoulCycle’s Chestnut Hill location, but still plans to make her way to Back Bay. “I would like to visit the new studio and meet the new instructors,” she said. “However, because the Chestnut Hill studio is so close, I think I will still mainly go there.”
Fuchs prefers to exercise off campus as a way to explore the area around her, and is looking forward to the Back Bay location. “The Copley location is great,” she said. “It is the perfect place for a morning workout, then an afternoon exploring Back Bay.” Fuchs plans to visit the new studio this coming weekend, where they will be hosting a Halloween-themed opening party that will be open to the public.
Although Royer prefers the accessibility of the studio in Chestnut Hill, she is very about the addition of the new location in Back Bay, and hopes it will create a larger SoulCycle following in the Boston area.
“New York City has 16 studios, and until now, Boston only had the one located in Chestnut Hill,” she said. “New York has a huge Soul following, and I could see the same happening in Boston.” She believes that the new city-central location will help create the following she imagines.
With the addition of the Back Bay location, SoulCycle has already been rumored to be expanding across the Boston area, and plans to open a studio in Beacon Hill in 2016, according to Boston.com. Clark said that the company is currently focused on building the SoulCycle community in Back Bay.
Featured Images Courtesy Of SoulCycle