Wilton Center is getting a huge jolt of energy on Thursday, July 16 when JoyRide Wilton, the town’s first dedicated indoor cycling studio, open its doors for business. Riders can give the studio a try when all classes will be offered for free with two Preview Days on July 16 and 17. Then JoyRide Wilton’s Grand Opening will be held on Saturday, July 18 with cycling classes throughout the morning starting at 7 a.m..
Wilton is the newest JoyRide location to open since the studio was founded in Westport and later spread to Darien and Ridgefield. They specialize in offering high-energy, indoor cycling fitness classes led by motivating instructors trained in JoyRide’s own method. Each 50-minute class is choreographed to a range of music and held in a dimly lit studio, with top of the line stationary bikes and a premium sound system. The heart-pumping, music-thumping, (and, some say, spiritual) interval cardio workout burns an average of 450-600 calories per class.
JoyRide Wilton owner Amy Pal opened her first studio in Ridgefield, where she and her husband, Kevin Manley, live with their two kids. She eyed Wilton as her second location for many of reasons. Chief among them, she’s banking on the studio’s philosophy meshing very well with the energy in Wilton, tapping into not just Wilton Warrior pride but also the town’s athleticism and close-knit community vibe.
“Our experience in Ridgefield was magical. We found the best instructors and they all connected with each other straight away. It showed in their rides and the way they connected with the community. I just loved the way it went, seeing people making pretty big life changes—not just instructors but our riders. I loved the energy and I wanted to do that again, and I thought the landscape of Wilton was similar that I could find that same magic here.”
She was thrilled when several Wilton residents who were loyal riders in Ridgefield took the leap to become instructors themselves, signing on to teach at the Wilton studio. Instructors Tara Snow, Lynn Dinanno and Anne Stauff call Wilton home, and a fourth, Stacia Howard, lived in Wilton for 18 years and recently moved to New Canaan.
“That’s really important to the fabric of what we’re trying to do, connecting to the residents and to know the ebb and flow of the town, to make sure we’re hitting it right,” Pal says.
But most of all, she adds, JoyRide is focused on spinning—and only spinning, and that’s what makes them unique and good at what they do.
“It’s a different experience. We’re a dedicated spin studio, and this is the only thing we do. People come to us for our expertise. It’s not a gym that offers spin among lots of other things. Spin is all we do.”
Pal lists the top-end equipment, and the level of training her instructors go through as key things JoyRide Wilton will offer. Classes will be offered 7-days-a-week. They’ve completely renovated their 2,500 sq. ft. location at 3 Godfrey Place, next door to Pet Pantry Warehouse, and are excited to show the studio to Wilton residents when they open.
The studio room features stadium-styled tiered platforms so that each of the 36 bikes has a clear view of the instructor, and boasts state of the art sound and cooling systems.
There are also spa-like men’s and women’s changing rooms with lockers, showers, complimentary towels and high end toiletries. Pal also designed a lounge area with comfortable seating, TV and free WiFi so clients can socialize and linger before or after their workout.
Pal says that riders at every level will love what they find at JoyRide, even beginners.
“You’re not going to believe what you can do when you’re being pushed by someone well trained to coach you through your ride, in an environment that’s dark so you don’t feel self-conscious, listening to the most brilliant music and sound system. It’s magical, you’re like, ‘Wow, I didn’t know working out can be so fun.’ With beginners there’s an intimidation factor, and they shouldn’t feel that way at all. We’re so welcoming, and we help you set up your bike, give you a tour of the studio, there’s definitely a personal touch. And you go as hard as you can, to your scale of exertion. That’s the beauty—everybody’s different, but you’re all working together, and that pushes you too,” she says.
Her enthusiasm is contagious, and high-energy is absolutely the appropriate way to describe the JoyRide approach. Their press materials describe it as a program that, “…combines core elements of Pilates with fast-paced indoor cycling to improve cardiovascular fitness, lower blood pressure, build muscle and reduce body fat. Set to heart-pounding music, JoyRide classes surge with the combined energy of the enthusiastic riders, elevating the ride to an endorphin-charged, sweat-soaked, shared workout experience.”
Pal hopes to entice as many Wilton converts to fall in love with spinning. Part of that is by offering everyone the first ride for free, no matter when someone new tries it. Knowing that a lot of new riders will be trying JoyRide for the first time over the next few months, she promises to make sure everyone learns the ropes.
“We understand the audience is new here, and we’re going to cater to that and make sure people feel comfortable,” she says.
JoyRide Wilton’s website is now live, and riders will soon be able to book classes online. Customers are not required to sign long term membership contracts. Instead, they can purchase single classes or packages of classes, or choose memberships ranging from monthly to annual. Packages can be shared between family members as well. For more information, contact JoyRide Wilton by phone (203.529.5091) or via email.