This week I had the opportunity to try not one but TWO offerings at Flywheel DC. As part of the healthy eating challenge I signed up for with Whole Foods, we were given a complimentary Flywheel class Monday evening followed by a Wednesday evening FlyBarre class. First up – let’s head to the bikes!
Flywheel is located at 1927 Florida Avenue in Dupont Circle. It’s a bit of a congested area and I was worried about getting there but was able to quickly find metered parking both nights I went. The facility itself is converted from an old theater. The spinning studio is downstairs and the barre studio is upstairs. Upon arrival I was greeted warmly and checked in for my first visit to the studio. I was impressed right off the bat because amenities are insanely plentiful. Spin shoes, if needed, are complimentary – along with lockers, towels, showers, hair ties – you name it – oh and apples and bananas for recovery 🙂
There is a bike map before entering the studio which has 60 spin bikes. The staff are really great in getting you set up on your bike. My experience with clipping in shoes is new but I was able to clip in and out of these with such ease! The unique part of Flywheel is the small digital monitor on each bike that measures your “torq”, RPM and calculates power. A couple of screens at the front display this info (if you select it) and your performance data is also uploaded to your account.
Alex was our instructor and he was fabulous. It was 45 minutes of no bones about it cycling and a great playlist. The moves weren’t anything too crazy though I had a love/hate thing going on with the monitor. He was good about telling us where our torq rate should be and what RPM to get to during the climbs and other moves. The competitor in me wanted to make sure I hit all the numbers he threw out there but then there were other moments where I could’ve gone all Lucy to his Charlie Brown. 🙂 At any rate, it was nice to know where you stood throughout the class. We did end with some arm work using a lightweight bar – a nice change of pace from free weights!
All in all I enjoyed my Flywheel experience and looked forward to FlyBarre a couple short days later.
Next up was my experience at FlyBarre. I’ve taken barre a few times already and haven’t loved it but keep wanting to give it another chance. Wednesday evening it was all about Power Barre 45! This class was described as “delivering the intensity of a 60-minute class packed into a condensed 45-minute format. Prepare for no breaks as this class pushes from one exercise to the next with one final stretch at the end of class.” Yeah, so that…
I was assigned a mat, grabbed a set of 2 lb and 3 lb weights and headed into the studio (which was immaculate). Each station was set up with a ball and 2 resistance bands. Our instructor was Destinee who was an amazing little ball of energy! We started with legs before moving on to ab work using the resistance band with our feet tucked under the barre. Following these sets we moved on to arm work with the weights and more resistance band use for the triceps then the thigh set, closing out with more abs using the ball.
And… ouch. But that 45 minutes flew by like whoa. I liked this session and I think the instructor made it that much more enjoyable. Am I still on the fence about Barre? Yes. I’m just used to lifting heavy (a la Body Pump) so not sure this is something I can/want to work into my regular routine. But I can see me doing a class here and there.
My assessment? Flywheel overall is great. I liked the plush space and friendly staff and the amenities can’t be beat. The price tag though is a little much for me. Classes are $28 a piece and even if you buy packages there isn’t too much of a price differential. If cycling and barre is your jam though, I couldn’t recommend it highly enough. I don’t see them on the DC ClassPass network yet, but even if they don’t make it there – I could see me making an occasional appearance here.
Spinning and Barre – yay or nay? What’s your favorite go-to workout? Is there is aFlywheel near you?