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Chelsea Cycling Gym Will Live Stream Classes Across the Country

By Mathew Katz | January 6, 2014 6:43am
 The bikes come complete with a tablet that can live stream classes.
Peloton Cycle Opening in Chelsea
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CHELSEA — Fans of a new cycling gym in Chelsea will be able to bring intense pedaling workouts into the comfort of their own apartments, thanks to custom-made bikes and live streamed classes.

Peloton Cycle, opening later this winter at 140 W. 23rd St., will sell the $1,995 carbon steel exercise bikes used during its classes, which are equipped with handlebar-mounted touch screens that allow users to tap into the studio remotely.

All of the instructor-led classes in the 50-bike studio will be filmed and streamed online, so that subscribers across the country can follow along.

"It's pretty much a television studio for us," said Tom Cortese, the company's chief operating officer.

That's not to say the classes are only for actors and fitness models — the new facility will be a full-service gym open to members and complete with a lounge, juice bar, locker rooms and showers.

"We're not 100 percent certain on the membership model yet for taking classes in the studio, but it will certainly be open to folks who want to take a class there," Cortese said. 

Each Peloton bike has a 21.5-inch touch screen that can connect to Wi-Fi and stream live classes or watch classes on-demand. Friends can connect to Facebook and share their workouts. The bike has a microphone and webcam, letting cyclers compete and video chat with friends and rivals while working out.

The startup raised more than $300,000 on Kickstarter over the summer and hopes to open its Chelsea studio by March. The company has spent two years on research and development to perfect its bikes and programs, Cortese said.

Peloton already streams classes from a closed set on West 29th Street, featuring 10 experienced instructors. The classes only stream to Peloton bike owners, though a separate app will come in the future.

"Today, we stream just a handful of classes every day, but when we move to the full, public Chelsea location, that can get up to 10 or 12 classes a day," Cortese said.

For bikers hoping to get in a few rides at home, the company promises the bike's chain-free belt will be "near-silent" — so it won't annoy roommates or family members. Along with the nearly $2,000 price tag, buying a bike requires purchasing a one-year subscription to Peloton's streaming and on-demand classes, at $39 a month. 

"There's really nothing else like it," Cortese said. "It's a piece of fitness equipment that's as intelligent as your tablet."