Beginning Friday morning, community members can start taking classes at Michigan’s first-ever SoulCycle. The studio is located on South University Avenue near Espresso Royale.
Classes are expected to run at least 29 times during the week and new bookings are available every Monday at noon. Prices, packages and schedules can be found on their website.
Briana Krull, studio manager of SoulCycle Ann Arbor, said she’s excited to introduce the Ann Arbor community to this new experience, which features choreography as a way to obtain a full-body workout. Unlike other workouts focusing on competition, Krull said SoulCycle is focused on the individual’s goals.
“A lot of workouts these days are quantified with metrics,” Krull said. “SoulCycle doesn’t really have a competitive aspect, it’s more about tuning into your body. You’re supposed to match the beat of the music that you’re riding with your pedal strokes, and you also ride with your pack.”
Krull said the setup of the room is supposed to help members focus on doing the best of their ability.
“We’ll have the bikes close together to feed off the energy of the people next to you and really feed off the music,” Krull said. “You’re supposed to disconnect from your phone, from metrics … really enjoy that 45 minutes of your day for yourself.”
LSA freshman Celene Philip has participated in SoulCycle classes before. Philip said she enjoys the non-competitive aspect of the workout.
“The instructors stress a lot that the only person you’re here for is yourself, and they stress a lot about the idea that you don’t have to follow their guidelines,” Philip said. “You just need to push yourself enough that you are out of your comfort zone.”
Krull said each class is capped at 47 people and led by an instructor. The selection process for instructors is competitive, she said.
After regional auditions, Krull said prospective instructors spend eight weeks in New York City or Los Angeles to train. Then, they teach practice classes in their respective markets, which Krull described as having “cut-throat” competition with high expectations for technique perfection.
SoulCycle faced controversy in August when its owner, prominent University donor Stephen M. Ross, held a fundraiser for President Donald Trumps’s re-election campaign. SoulCycle released a statement on Twitter, signed by CEO Melanie Whelan, saying the company did not endorse the fundraiser.
LSA sophomore Nicole Lin participates in Michigan Muscle Club and has heard about SoulCycle from her teammates. She said she is hoping to try it.
“I’ve heard a lot about cycling classes, so I would be willing to try it,” Lin said. “It’s really good cardio, especially since I’m not a fan of running.”
However, Lin is slightly concerned about the prices of the classes. New riders receive an offer of $20 per class, and $26 per class afterwards. In an email to The Daily, a spokesperson for SoulCycle noted that for the first time ever at the Ann Arbor studio, SoulCycle is offering a discounted $22 class for students with a valid ID.
Philip shared a similar sentiment to Lin’s regarding cost, but said she thinks it will be a fun workout she can do every once in a while.
“It can be pretty hard for people to afford it,” Philip said. “On one hand, it can be good for people who come from big cities that often do SoulCycle when they’re home so they can have a piece of home to bring with them to Ann Arbor. But I also think that hopefully SoulCycle will market it in a way that’s more accessible to people here.”
Francesca Duong can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.