UYC’s Guide: 5 NYC Workouts That Will Spice Up Your Routine

I don’t know about you, but I have a pretty low shelf life when it comes to a consistent workout routine.  I’m all about the hot yoga, oh, for about three weeks, before the downward dogs and puddles (of other people’s) sweat starts to get to me.  Then I’ll take up jogging for a few weeks, until my playlist starts to lose its luster.  And while budgeting my money I’m always looking for a good workout bargain.

If you also have problems staying motivated with the same old, same old, we got you covered on some workouts that will spice up your sweat session:

SLT Yoga

Standing for “strengthen, lengthen, tunes”, SLT is the yoga that combines your flow with some seriously good soundtracks.  As NYC’s first music-focused, high energy yoga studio, this isn’t exactly the class to go to if you want to get your zen on.  But if, like me, you’re tired of getting your zen on and want to get some serious toe-tapping sweat-inducing warrior poses going on, this is your class.  The music is all upbeat…I’ve heard everything from hip hop (love!), rock, pop, and soul.  The studio’s yoga director, Erin Jacques, is energetic and leads a class that will have you coming back.

Cost: First Class $15, Single Class After $24

Broadway Dance Center

Guys, this place is seriously a gem of a gym…err, dance studio.  But you’ll be burning enough calories during your dance sessions you might as well be on a treadmill.  I recently discovered the studio when signing up for a Broadway Jazz class.  Led by instructor Sue Samuels, who was as funny as she was spunky, we spent our hour and a half warming up at the barre with bongo beats in the background, weaving in some isolated floor exercises complete with jazz hands, and finally learning a routine that included the dramatic use of top hats.  To say I loved every moment of it would be an understatement.  I can see this being a workout staple long, long into my future.

Bonus: they have so many different kinds of dance (think hip-hop, ballet, even voguing!)  at so many levels (absolute beginner to professional Broadway), it’s impossible to get bored.

Cost: $18 per class


If you’ve been outside at all this summer, there’s no way you could miss the lovely blue bikes, stationed on what seems like every other corner.  Have to admit: I’ve never ridden a bike in NYC before this, and I was kinda scared out of my mind.  (Rightly so, have you seen our cab drivers?!)  Anyhow, I decided to take the slightly safer route and do the big loop in Central Park, minimizing car traffic, at least.  (Although there were a few almost-collisions with pedestrians…if this is something you’re going to take up regularly I’d recommend investing in a helmet!)  The hills at the northern end of the park will definitely get your heart racing, and it’s also a nice way to explore the city.

All in all, the experience using the bike was pretty seamless: you need to bring your credit card to rent one, and when you are pulling the bike from the stand just be sure to lift up and out.  (Yes, I was standing there like a dodo for 5 minutes wondering why my bike was stuck, until a nice European tourist demonstrated how it was done.  Of course.)  Also, if you have a smart phone you can check ahead of time how many empty slots are left at whatever station you are planning to go to.  If they are booked to full capacity, you can return the bike to another station.

Cost: For a 24-Hour Access Pass $9.95, which gets you only 30 minutes of riding time.  If you ride up to an hour, it’s $4 extra dollars, an hour and a half is $13 extra dollars.  I’d say if you’re really into the biking thing, the most economical option is the $95 annual membership, which gets you free trips up to 45 minutes.

Studio Anya

This was my first experience on one of those Pilates reformer machines, and I must say, I left the class feeling as good as I do after an hour massage.  Don’t get me wrong: it was definitely a workout that hit muscle groups I didn’t realize I even had, but it was a very therapeutic workout, leaving me feeling refreshed and energized rather than feeling like I needed a nap.  Totally recommend.

Studio Anya offers semi-private circuit classes, which is 3 students max who all reap the benefits of their excellent instructors.

Cost: $35 per class

First Ascent Fitness

When training for my Toughmudder race last year, I definitely understood the fitness benefits to jumping on the bootcamp wagon, as it really kicks your butt into action.  I’ve tried a few different camps with different instructors, but First Ascent Fitness with Trevor Swaine is definitely my favorite.  He’s motivating without being overbearing (anyone who’s taken a bootcamp class know what I’m talking about!), and the jogs in-between the exercises allow you to catch your breath, while still upping your cardio.

Cost: $25 per class

What unique fitness classes have you stumbled across?  Share below!


By: Jessica Tiare Bowen


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