It's hard to tell which is more powerful — the beat from 8 a.m. high-intensity circuit training class at the Fhitting Room on Manhattan's West 19th Street, or the pounding of the sledgehammers six blocks north in what will be the new penthouse corporate headquarters of Peloton, a live-streaming, indoor cycling start-up.
Whichever the decibel winner between these competitors, this kind of boutique fitness is winning the workout wars in Manhattan and across the nation.
"I call it the intersection between personal training and group fitness," said Kari Saitowitz, founder of the Fhitting Room, which bills itself as an upscale High Intensity Training (HIT) boutique fitness studio.
The classes are smaller, the attention closer and the amenities higher end. Individual shower rooms with designer soaps and lotions, and special stations for hair and make-up. All that, of course, comes at a price. A single class costs $38. Compare that to fees that can go as low as $10 for a full monthly membership at a chain-style gym, like Planet Fitness, which went public last year.