The pandemic hasn't killed the fitness class but grown it for one Sioux Falls business, so much so that its franchise has given it an exception to open a nearby new location.
Fit Body Boot Camp is beefing up its business to a second location at West 26th Street and Ellis Road, in a strip mall near Shenanigans Sports Bar and Grill.
Thirty-minute classes offered at the gym have grown to well over 500 clients, and now the local franchisee hopes a west side location will offer more access.
“This location is rather full,” owner CJ Wehrkamp said. “We’ve noticed they don’t have any specialized fitness options on the west side.”
Sioux Falls is so busy, Fit Body has special permission to add a close new location
Since launching, Fit Body Fitness in Sioux Falls has become a mainstay for the franchise, which is based in California.
Sioux Falls trainers filmed at-home workouts at the start of the virus — and made them for the entire network. That helped boost trainers’ profiles and the Sioux Falls location. As soon as in-person HIIT (high-intensity interval training) classes started back up, the morning, lunch and after-work sessions became busy.
Most franchises have limits on how close each location can be to one another. But, the Sioux Falls location has become an exception.
“Fit Body likes locations to be six miles apart, but we were able to amend that to four (miles) for Sioux Falls,” Wehrkamp said.
The current location offers 12-week Transformation classes, as well as its regular suite of sessions. Weekly prices start at $39 per week, Wehrkamp stated. And the Sioux Falls Fit Body Boot Camp will help lead some other prominent sessions too.
HIIT training adds social time to workout
The original Sioux Falls location started with 15 clients in 2015, leaving Wehrkamp wondering if he’d be able to pay the bills.
Not now, especially as HITT has popularized into the top type of fitness in the country, according to the American College of Sports Medicine. A combination of coaching and class setting has attracted everyone, Wehrkamp stated.
“We’ll hear, ‘I want to get in shape,’ and people do it. We have a high success rate,” Wehrkamp said, adding that the social aspect keeps people going.
"You can go to the gym and get into shape but still not feel good. I used to do that every day of high school. I didn't talk to anyone for about a year. Then they encouraged me. But we want people to also feel good, right away. I try to compact that into a week."
The new location, over 4,000 square feet, will have the same types of classes. Plans are on hold with the city, for now, for whether the opening will be in June or the end of August.
But the new location will mirror the current location, which is located on 3324 S. Duluth Ave off of 41st Street. Classes are held in one large room.
During a session the coach speaks encouragement and the set of exercises for the moment into a microphone. A second coach helps each member of the class focus on their form, then sanitize their hands and move on to the next set quickly. The style keeps classes cheaper than typical personal training, while keeping the mood high, Wehrkamp stated.
The new location will rotate in popular coaches.
“I want a space that’s person-oriented. Everything we do, it’s to build community and self-confidence,” Wehrkamp said.
This article originally appeared on Sioux Falls Argus Leader: Fit Body Boot Camp adding new location on west side of Sioux Falls