For many years, cycling studios and official SPIN® studios, a relatively rare phenomena, have flown “under the radar”. There are some awesome and successful studios, but most communities are not familiar with them and the basic concept has been largely unknown. No longer.
Two high-profile New York studios: Soul Cycle and Flywheel have recently received significant national press. Soul Cycle was acquired by national chain Equinox, and Flywheel has partnered with investors who have announced aggressive expansion plans throughout the U.S.
If you are a studio owner, or contemplating a studio in your area….this is good news! Actually, let me correct myself….this is great news. Here’s why.
1) It helps legitimize the concept of a stand-alone cycling studio. This is important if you are trying to raise money for your studio, or convince a landlord of the viability of the business.
2) Their presence expands the market. The more people that hear about indoor cycling studios….the better. Cycling studios don’t just steal riders from health clubs they expand the market and make the workout available to a broader audience. Their existence creates broad awareness that is helpful to all.
3) It’s a cliche and it’s true. Competition is good. It makes us all better. Knowing they are expanding makes studio owners evaluate how to do things better and secure their local position.
Would I want a Soul Cycle or a Flywheel to open across the street from my studio? No, of course not. But there are thousands of communities in the US (and abroad) that could support cycling studios…..and the more they open, the more the tide rises for the rest of us.
At the end of the day, cycling studios are not Starbucks, which serves up an identical product in every store you go into. What we’ve learned at our studio Spynergy, is that cycling studios are true local businesses that ultimately thrive on three things: A) Awesome and committed instructors, B) The building of a vibrant community, and C) Smart local marketing deep into a community or neighborhood.
Net, net? There is plenty of room in the market for Soul Cycle, Flywheel, and also for talented entrepreneurs to build new, compelling cycling studios. There are a few hundred cycling studios around the world right now, let’s not worry about market saturation until there are 10,000 (like there are in yoga).