There are some workouts that simply just make you feel different. More and more in this current day and age, the focus on feeling good mentally has become an active practice in what we do to get physically fit. With classes becoming more and more the preference—even virtual ones—you see brands popping up with their own viewpoint on how things should be done.
It’s the same for SoulCycle. Through the brand’s ups and downs, one aspect has stayed the same—the work that is put in.
15 years ago in 2006, spin teacher Ruth Zukermanher and her clients Elizabeth Cutler, a real estate agent, and Julie Rice, a talent manager for Benny Medina’s Handprint Entertainment, decided to do things their own way. They decided to shift working out into a place where everyone feels the results in a dynamic way.
The official website for SoulCycle states: “We call it a cardio party. Our riders say it’s changing their lives. With every pedal stroke, our minds clear and we connect with our true and best selves. Through this shared Soul experience, our riders develop an unshakeable bond with one another. Friendships are made and relationships are built. In that dark room, our riders share a Soul experience. We laugh, we cry, we grow — and we do it together, as a community.”
As a community is how it works as well. When you walk in the door at Soul Cycle, you are part of the same engine. Similar to other workout empires that have had locations pop up around the country and globally, Soul Cycle builds on that aspect of having a family-type of feel. Meaning when you’re there, you’re automatically part of a group, one working towards a common goal. With that comes some perks. In their boutique locations, many riders get sucked into the dimly lit rooms, but the fun part comes when the lights go down and the disco ball of music and lights ignite… and that doesn’t change with their pop-up locations either.
Although there is a brick-and-mortar in Philadelphia on 16th Street, one new pop-up has made its way to the City of Brotherly Love for those who are getting ready to work out again in groups.
The signature spin class will return to downtown Philly’s Rittenhouse Square but for now, fitness-focused Philadelphians can spin their way through a new pop-up location just down the road, popping up in the Liberty Ballroom at the Marriott Downtown.
The experience is similar to those that you might find at huge workout names, ones that have had their own badge of honor for those who participate. At Barry’s Bootcamp, they give you cool-mint towels to refresh after class, through Peloton you have a way to connect with people from around the world, and with Soul, you dance to the rhythm while biking.
While cycling, riders are invited to add some “choreography” to their ride. It’s not as intense as you would think, you don’t unclip and try your hand at a cartwheel, it’s mainly adding some soul to the way you cycle. But no, it’s not a normal spin class. Spinning was created by ultra-distance cyclist Johnny “Johnny G” Goldberg in the Los Angeles area as an indoor cycling experience for endurance road cyclists. SoulCycle was the original boutique spin studio, founded on the upper west side of Manhattan.
The big difference is also in the instructors. Depending on who you go to, of course. Although the brand has had its own set of critics, as many have in the fitness field, there are still some who feel the effects of the endorphins and the music to switch it up and bring a little more rhythm to the way they move.
It’s been a year of uncertainty for many studios, and SoulCycle has not been exempt from that. Getting people back to working out in person is something that is going to be on everyone’s priority list in the fitness world. SoulCycle is doing what they can safely, and it works.
For more information, visit soul-cycle.com