This Denver studio owner has the secret to a successful sweat all year long.
Download the app
Fitness memberships, workout classes, wellness services, beauty appointments and more.
February is Black History Month—a month to celebrate the achievements and contributions of African Americans in society. Inclusivity in wellness has been a topic for much discussion, especially as of late. We are taking this opportunity to continue to shine a light on the gap of inclusivity and diversity in our industry, and take action to promote, empower, and honor the Black community that shapes and grows wellness.
We celebrate the inspirational Black voices in the industry—and right here in our wellness community. “No matter how woke you think you are, we all have biases. So, it’s good to be aware of what our individual biases are, and what we can do about them,” says Sunil Rajasekar, President and CTO of Mindbody. “Driving change is hard, especially at a society-level. It’s going to take the best brains to solve this.”
In recent years, a wave of Black fitness entrepreneurs have stepped in to create a more inclusive landscape within the wellness industry. How can we all make sure we are all putting an effort in to make sure we promote diversity in this space? Well, for starters, we can support their businesses.
Whether you’re ready to try out a calorie-torching HIIT class or find your moment of Zen in a yoga class at the end of a long workday, odds are you’ll be able to find a Black-owned fitness studio that suits you.
We’ve put together a comprehensive list of Black-owned fitness studios that should be on your radar:
Align Brooklyn is a boutique wellness studio offering mindful practices including yoga, Pilates, barre, HIIT, chiropractic, and nutrition to increase your functional vitality. Align Brooklyn is owned by a chiropractor, who specializes in sports injury and performance—making them able to provide clients with the highest quality fitness and wellness science available.
Owned by celebrity trainer Kelvin Gary, this studio is focused on functional fitness—the kind that helps you live your life better, faster, stronger, and more efficiently. As functional trainers, they believe that every body is different and cultivate fun and dynamic workouts that emphasize teamwork and cooperation. Classes start at just $18.
By incorporating resistance training mixed with some cardio components, BURN has developed and designed a unique fitness concept unlike any other studio in the Dallas area. Their innovative approach promises to not only challenge your physical abilities but your mental capacity as well. Currently, online and in-person classes are available starting at just $20 for a drop-in.
Offering a unique mix of fat-blasting cycling classes, toning barre classes, and strengthening yoga sculpt classes, CYCLED! Studios located in Washington, DC and Maryland has something for everyone. They are currently offering socially distanced indoor classes (masks required), outdoor cycling rides in Takoma Park, and virtual classes all starting at $25 for a drop-in.
E.F.F.E.C.T. Fitness is a premier physical performing arts facility located in the heart of Atlanta. By balancing fitness and creativity, their techniques will inspire you to commit to your overall health and wellness goals. They offer numerous types of fitness classes including bootcamp, interval training, cycling, and personal training sessions. Classes start at $25 a pop.
If you’re looking to find your calm amongst all the chaos going on in the world, then consider HealHaus as your one-stop-shop for peace and serenity. Right now, they are offering virtual yoga classes in the styles of Vinyasa and Restorative for $10 per class.
At Harlem-based HIIT studio, JTW Fit, they know that if you are willing to put in the work, they can help you achieve your fitness goals. Their customized programs are designed to motivate and challenge you while expressing the importance of a healthy lifestyle. Are you ready to trust the process and put in the work? Good. Virtual classes start at $10 while outdoor classes are listed at $25 per session.
PIES Fitness and Yoga Studio is aware there is no one exercise program that is right for everyone, but they firmly believe there can be one fitness place that is right for “every body.” With a mix of different styles of yoga, Zumba, and belly dancing classes, their virtual schedule is jam-packed with fitness offerings that will keep you in-tune with mind, body, and soul. In-person and virtual classes start at $12.
When Teresa Ellis opened Pilates Barre and Jams, she was keen on creating a space that helped people become stronger in their bodies. Since 2008, her goal has been to make movement available and accessible to the people who have never felt comfortable walking into a status quo studio because of the fear they didn't fit the aesthetic. Her mission is to make sure her clients are always feeling good, feeling strong, and able to do functional movements pain-free. Virtual classes start at $97 for a 4-class pack.
Soho Yoga’s philosophy is that yogis of all levels should be able to experience everything that yoga has to offer. While their public heated and non-heated studio classes are currently on hold, they are currently offering a variety of classes indoors and outdoors (at the beach, specifically) that fit into any schedule. Outdoor and virtual classes start at $20.
Founded in 2016 by Shanel Anderson, Soul City Yoga is a unique community Yoga studio with locations in Lynn and Malden, MA. Whether you are just beginning your yoga journey or looking for a deeper connection, at Soul City they encourage practitioners of all levels to come flow with them in a safe practice space where diversity is celebrated and representation is valued. Drop-ins start at just $14—or if you're new, swoop up one of their 2-week intro offers.
Since 2008, Studio 34 has cultivated a community; it has offered affordable yoga classes, workshops, and art shows for those who seek healing, as well as space for wellness practitioners to provide various forms of therapy. This energetic space respects and honors all bodies–encouraging everyone to breathe and move in their healing-centric studio. Their online yoga and meditation classes are only $15.
The Fit In's mission is to make quality health and wellness accessible to underrepresented communities. They knew there was work to be done which why they set up shop in fitness deserts to provide quality fitness to underserved areas. At this studio, you can enjoy a bevy of interval training classes both indoors and outdoors. Classes start at just $25.
Whether you’re a total newbie to the fitness scene or simply just trying to take your workout routine to the next level, consider TrapFit in Raleigh your new home away from home. With a schedule full of bootcamp, boxing, circuit training, and dance classes, we’re certain you’ll find a class that suits your fitness needs. Classes start at just $20 per session.
At TRILLFIT, everyone belongs. They take pride in being Boston's original hip hop workout party and believe that fitness should be fun, inclusive, and set to the illest soundtrack. Ready to squad up and make it TRILL today? Classes start at $20—and they even have an intro offer available for new students!
Looking for more businesses to support? ClassPass has also created a list of Black-owned business to check out all year-round. While both of these lists are a great start to get you familiar with many of the Black-owned businesses either in your neighborhood or around the globe, we have only scratched the surface. We'd love to keep these lists growing. If you have any businesses you'd like to see on these lists, click here to submit a Black-owned business we should be highlighting as well!
As we approach the holidays, now’s the perfect time to support the businesses you love. Whether it’s opting for a gift card stocking stuffer or something as simple as leaving a review to show your gratitude—supporting your local studios is a great way to spread the holiday cheer.
Here are some clear (and effective) ways to help support the studios you know and love a little extra during the most wonderful time of the year.
Studios rely on a steady stream of memberships to keep them running. As the year ends, buying a membership is the best way to show them (and yourself) a little extra love. Not only are you setting yourself up for a wellness-focused 2022, you’re also ensuring the future success of your fave studio. That’s a win-win. Need a little help finding the right membership to invest in? This blog has you covered.
Thinking of buying some new yoga pants or a mat? Or, if you’re still working out from home when you can’t make it to the studio, maybe you want some blocks and bolsters to enhance your practice. Before heading to a store or going online to big-brand websites, see if your local studios have anything to offer. They’ll often have their own websites, photos of retail on their social media accounts, or even discounted prices for items in their studio store for active members. Even something small like making a purchase through your local studio can make a world of difference for them. Plus, you’ll pretty much be a walking advertisement for the studio—and maybe you’ll meet some new workout buddies wearing it!
With most people traveling or rushing to get everything checked off their list before the end of the year, this season can be chaotic. Fortunately, many studios have embraced the hybrid approach and offer both in-person and virtual classes. This gives you the flexibility to work out with your favorite studios from wherever you’re headed this holiday season. (Yes, that includes an inch from the couch. We see you, post-turkey hangover.) If you’re pressed for time because of seasonal shopping or festivities, live stream and video on demand allow you to squeeze in much-needed movement while still supporting your local studios, too.
Want to let someone know you’re thinking of them this holiday season? Show how much you care with a gift card for an intro offer at your go-to studio. Or, give the gift of ClassPass. Your loved ones can try classes at studios they’ve always had on their bucket list, and maybe even find their new favorite routine heading into January. Plus, it's a gift that keeps on giving—the recipient will have the opportunity to attend multiple days (if not multiple weeks of) classes. Bonus points if you attend class with them.
How do you find the best new studios (or restaurants, coffee shops, hair salons, etc.) to try? You probably start by browsing around in your area and then check out the reviews to see what other people have to say about it (see How to Find the Top Yoga Studios and Classes in LA). Reviews are a great way to find out what a specific instructor is like, what you need to know before attending a class, and whether or not it sounds like what you’re looking for. Many studios also use these reviews to market themselves—sharing them on social media to attract new clients. So, if you have a studio you love (and you want to spread some love their way), shoot them five stars. They’ll appreciate it.
Most studios have Instagram accounts where they post new classes, studio updates, photos of their instructors and awesome retail products, and even videos you can follow along with. If you want to help your studio gain some attention and attract new clients, just follow, like, and share their posts! Want to go the extra mile when you’re in-studio? Hop on Instagram before class and snap a photo with your favorite instructor to help promote the studio. Be sure to tag them, the business, and any of your besties sweating it out with you.
Or follow us on Instagram to find new studios!
When it comes to supporting your local studios, bringing in new people is at the top of the list. If you have a local studio you absolutely love, chances are your friends and family will love them, too. Have loved ones in town for the holidays? Invite them to join in on some of your favorite classes. Not only will you get the chance to move and spend time together, but you’ll show your go-to studio some extra support as well.
Studio owners love to revamp their class offerings and schedules during the holidays. It’s a great opportunity for them to spice things up (preferably, with pumpkin) and spread holiday cheer. It’s also a great time to motivate their clients by giving them a head start on any upcoming wellness resolutions. Taking advantage of these holiday-themed classes and challenges spreads morale and cheer (something we could all use). Seeing high attendance numbers motivates your local studio owners and instructors, too.
Right now, community is so important. Show your studio how much their business—and the sense of community they create—means to you with a hand-written note. It’s a simple act of appreciation that will mean the world to them. Just like they push you to keep going when you’re struggling to make it through a workout (we’ve been there, too many times to count), going out of your way to tell them you see and appreciate their effort can also inspire them to keep pushing through a hard time (2020 and 2021 haven’t been the easiest). After all, the holidays are a time for expressing gratitude, right?
This holiday season, our studios still need us. And there are so many ways we can support them as they continue to rebuild after the last couple of years. So, purchase that membership (because showing up for yourself is always a good idea), bring your loved ones to a class, share on social, and give them a bit of extra love this year. Your support goes a long way in ensuring the future of your favorite studios.