When the lights go down and the music goes up, it’s on. Riders on the 63 stationary bikes in a Flywheel class aren’t just trying to break a sweat. They’re trying to best themselves and their cycle classmates.
Each custom-made bike at the new boutique studio (1927 Florida Ave. NW) that opened today — the 33rd Flywheel location worldwide — is outfitted with a Tech Pack, a monitor that shows riders their speed, resistance (or torque) levels and power. During a recent preview class, the instructor periodically turned on two TV screens called Torqboards, which show riders who’s working the hardest. After each class, Flywheel uploads performance data to riders’ individual accounts to track their progress.
“Everybody on their bike knows how hard they’re working and can be accountable for that,” says Danielle Devine-Baum, Flywheel’s creative director for the Northeast region.
A 45-minute class starts with a warm-up before riders sweat through series of seated sprints, standing hill climbs and intervals, frequently changing their resistance and speed. It’s pretty standard stuff in a cycling class – until the five-minute upper-body training starts about three-quarters of the way into the ride.
Using one or two 2-pound weighted bars, riders continue to spin their legs at a constant pace as they work their arms.
The studio, housed in the former Visions Cinema space, also has FlyBarre classes, which strengthens the core by rapidly targeting muscle groups. One floor exercise involves hooking one’s toes around the barre and pulling a resistance band hung over it, lifting the chest to work the abs.
“FlyBarre is a great complement to cycling, because it’s essentially a body-sculpting class,” says Kara Liotta, director of FlyBarre training. “If you stack the two workouts back-to-back, you get your cardio, your sweat, your calorie burn during cycling, and then you get weight training during the FlyBarre class.”
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