When a New York City-based fitness startup chose Boston as its second market two years ago, it was due to the city’s fast-growing fitness scene.
Recently, the Boston metropolitan area came in seventh in a ranking of the top 50 fittest cities in the U.S., according to the American Fitness Index. And today, thousands of runners took part in the 121st Boston Marathon, reinforcing this reputation.
“Boston is a very walkable city, so there’s a lot of studios in close proximity,” said Megan Smyth, co-founder and CEO of FitReserve, in an interview with BostInno. The fact that many studios and gyms are so close to one another facilitates the mixing and matching of different classes, according to Smyth.
FitReserve allows users to book fitness classes at different Boston studios by purchasing a recurring monthly plan on its online platform. As a result, gym-goers can build their personalized workout schedule by taking advantage of the complete class offerings at all partner studios.
One of the most common excuses for failing to hit the gym, according to Smyth, is the fact that certain studios can keep repeating the same workouts, a result of more and more facilities choosing to focus on one specific discipline.
“Consumers really like that specialization, because they know that if they go to that studio they’re going to get the best of the best of that type of workout,” Smyth admitted. “But at the same time…They get bored.”
Due to FitReserve, users may attend, say, a pilates class on Tuesday and an indoor cycling class on Thursday, and maybe try a boxing class just for fun.
Currently, FitReserve partners with 85 studios in Boston; check the full list here. In October 2015, when the company started its rollout in the city, partner studios were at 35. The company doesn’t have an office in Boston, but its headquarters are in New York, where it partners with 425 studios. FitReserve declined to disclose the number of its customers.
The main competitor of FitReserve is ClassPass, which is available in over 30 cities in the U.S. and launched in Boston in 2014. Both companies offer different types of monthly memberships that grants access to three, five or ten classes a month. FitReserve offers also a fourth plan allowing 20 classes a month.
FitReserve plans in Boston are slightly more expensive. For example, the 3 classes/month option costs $55 on FitReserve and $40 on ClassPass. In both cases, you can visit any studio only once a month. If you’re passionate about a specific studio, it's worth noticing that FitReserve allows Starter and Gold members to attend each studio up to four times a month. Another difference is that FitReserve provides access to the full studio’s schedule, while ClassPass has some blackout times.
ClassPass recently announced that they dropped their signature offering, the unlimited class bookings. FitReserve reported that they’re seeing a big surge in subscriptions since ClassPass changed its offering.
Smyth said that she tries to workout at least four or five times a week. “I try to be decently active every day.”
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