CycleBar in Sarasota

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Forget everything you know about spinning. CycleBar is a whole new kind of cycling class and it’s amazing.

I think the last time I took a spinning class was probably three years ago, and while I have a bike and will ride for fun, I hadn’t gone “cycling” for sometime, so I was excited to give CycleBar a shot. When I first walked in, I could tell this was a luxury studio. Never would I expect to walk into any fitness establishment and a space equipped with water, snacks and hair ties. I’m notorious for forgetting hairs and water when I’m coming from the office, so knowing those are available if I forget is wonderful. CycleBar also provides complimentary clip in riding shoes making the workout experience as easy as show up, clip in, and ride.

Now, the riding experience…it was unlike anything I’ve done before. First, the setting is almost like a club or a concert with the lights dimmed. There are TV screens that showcase music videos and riding stats throughout the class. Each stationary bike is set up with a towel and a weighted bar to be used during class, and a spot to easily access your water bottle. I was immediately drawn in when I entered the studio.

The first class I took was the Concert Series, where music by one artist is played the entire time. The week I was there it was the Black Eyes Peas. The artist changes weekly and is posted on the wall in the area just outside the studio so you won’t miss your favorite!

There are other themed classes like Sunday Brunch, where you can a classic Sunday ride, followed by strawberries and cream, pastries and maybe even a mimosa! Mash Up Monday and Throwback Thursday where the CycleStar instructors have awesome playlists. There’s even a Happy Hour class on Friday to start your weekend out right.

And of course, there is the classic ride at CycleBar. That’s the class I took tonight. I wanted to see what the typical class was like compared to the Concert Series I went to on Saturday.

In both classes we rode based off RPM that followed the beat of the music. Sometimes I had a really hard time getting those RPMs up. In the first class, anytime we needed to be about 107 is was a struggle. The second time around I did better and I think it’s because I focused on the music more. Maybe it helped having a variety of songs in the classic class.

About half way through, we settled down our pedaling and picked up the weighted stick where we began doing arm exercises. I never expected this during a cycling class, but I absolutely loved it. It helped break 50 minutes of straight cycling and turned it into more of a full body workout.

Screen Shot 2016-04-19 at 9.31.25 PMAt the end of the class, we were able to toss our shoes and towels into the bins. We were also given cold, damp towelettes to cool off with. When I arrived home, I checked my email and had message from CycleBar with my stats from the class. Stats are also added to the online account so it’s easy to track progress from class to class.

CycleBar in Sarasota on University Parkway opened up March 28 and is continuing to grow in membership. If you’re in the Sarasota area, I highly recommend giving it a shot. Especially now while it’s in its early days and you get a a feel for the classes. I won’t be surprised if those 50 bikes fill up quickly in the next few months.

If you’re not in the Sarasota area but want to try CycleBar, enter your zip code here to find a location near you. Happy cycling!

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