I love spinning. One of the first things I tried when joining NYSC last year was spinning, and I was immediately hooked. It is hard not to get addicted. It is a great workout and you do not have to plan anything for yourself – the instructor does that for you. You just show up and work your butt off for 45 minutes. The only spin classes I have ever taken have been at NYSC locations, and 2 at Gold’s Gym when I was home in Syracuse, NY. The other day Bryan was asking me if I would like cycling shoes to help my ride. I don’t know do they really make a difference? And I was discussing with a coworker if these fancy, strictly spinning studios around the city actually provide a better work out. Neither of us have been to one so the conversation really left me speculating. So, when my cousin, Molly, decided to give spinning a try at Fly Wheel, I figured why not give it a spin. Haha, too much? Maybe..

Some background on Fly Wheel.This is  exerts straight from their website:

Flywheel was founded by a team passionate about fitness and dedicated to building the model for a “next generation” indoor cycling experience–a unique combination of camaraderie, high intensity, and, most importantly, fun.

Every Flywheel ride delivers a high-intensity cardio workout in a fun, competitive, and energetic atmosphere. Using the most effective and safest method, Flywheel instructors teach the most challenging indoor cycling classes in New York and Florida, set to incredible music and delivered in breathtaking facilities.

Sounds like a cycling heaven, right? We signed up for the Wednesday morning 6 AM class(ughhh) with Grant at the Chelsea location. According to Google Maps that is exactly 1.0 miles from Bryan’s apartment. I got up at 5 am to get ready and walk there.

Scary Morning Picture

It was very dark and chilly at 520 am. The streets were really quite too, so I walked fast. Note to self: learn to use Photoshop to edit pictures 1) to have better quality pictures 2) edit out that giant pimple on my chin.

I’m going to review the class via a Pro/Con list.


  • FREE SPIN SHOES! – when you sign up they ask for your size, so your shoes are there waiting for you in a cubby with the same number as your bike you signed up for
  • FREE Bottled water (as much as you like), towel, and locker service
  • Computer on bikes giving a torq (resistance), RPM, and power ( which I think was calories) readings.
  • Tiered set up for bikes – so even in the back you did not feel like you were in the back
  • High Intensity – as promised. I was sweating in 10 minutes
  • Challenging Instructor – mixed terrain ride with hills, speed work, and interval combinations
  • Weight bar arm work out 2/3 way through the class – not expecting this. Loved it, because cycling tends to be just lower body work.
  • No clock to watch – I am a big clock watcher, even in a good class. The 45 min flew by!
  • Music loud and fast paced – perfect to match intensity
  • Torq Board – if you are competitive this is great because you see where your stats compare with everyone else in the class
  • Performance Stats recorded online after each class


  • No showers – luckily I live close by to go home and shower before work
  • Torq board was not running – I was a little disappointed about this because I wanted to have the full Fly Wheel experience
  • Performance Stats not showing up online -yet. I don’t know how long it takes, but it is now 5pm…
  • Very Cramped hallway with the lockers – when class was done I couldn’t get my things out of the locker because everyone pushing in for the next class. It was very chaotic. I just kept thinking, If I can’t get out you can’t get in so stop bullying your way through
  • EXPENSIVE – $30 a class. $135 for 5 class (but they never expire), $395/month with a 6 month commitment (yikes!)

My overall thoughts – not really worth the money. The studio is pretty, and I liked the torq meter instead of the perceived 1-10 scale of exertion. I honestly think I had such a good work out because of the cycling shoes. The instructor was great, but I think comparable to a good instructor at NYSC. Being able to snap in makes it easier to focus on the pull up, and gives your legs a better work out. I think if you already go to a gym that has spinning and you find a challenging instructor then I would not pay extra to go to strictly spin studio. If you have some extra cash and spinning is all you want then Fly Wheel was a great work out with some great free perks. I think I am just going to stick to the instructors I know are good at NYSC, maybe push myself a little harder in class by amping up the resistance, and maybe get some inexpensive spin shoes. I am glad I tried it though. It answered my 2 questions: Are spin shoes worth it? Yes! Are specialty spin studios? Not really.

If you would like to try it out, go to the Fly Wheel website to sign up, and enter FLYYELP10 at checkout for $10 off your first class.

On a side note, the city was pretty peaceful on my walk back at 7 am, and the weather was so nice this morning. My walk takes me right through Madison Square Park. It was a very relaxing stroll after a good workout.

View from the park

This is what Shake Shack looks like with no line!

Shake Shack

What was the last fitness center class you took? What did you think?