FROM spinning birthday celebrations to pole dancing bachelorette bashes, US gyms are offering fitness parties as a new way to mark life’s milestones, with a few friends and a good sweat.
Gyms and fitness studios are often eager to host the festivities, which light up darkened rooms after hours and expose potential new members to their services.
“We have created bachelorette parties, birthday parties, college reunions and divorce parties,” said Donna Cyrus. She is the senior vice-president of programming at Crunch, a national chain.
Pole dancing parties are among the most-requested fitness parties, and the merrymakers are mostly women in their 20s and 30s.
“The class is a reason for friends to get together and shed inhibitions for an hour,” Cyrus explained, “as well as a great marketing tool and clever use of idle space for the gym”.
Fitness and yoga instructor Magen Banwart has led workout get-togethers from South Carolina to the Hamptons in New York.
She said it was a way to distinguish herself from other teachers in a very competitive market.
“For the right price you can get anyone to go anywhere and teach anything,” Banwart said.
Having a fitness class instead of drinks was a growing trend for women in work-related situations, she added. And at business conferences, historically driven by parties, dinners and cocktail hours, more time and money is being spent on healthy events.