Expensive Exercise: We Investigate the $30+ Fitness Class Phenomenon


Victoria's Secret

You're in a room. It's nearly pitch black, aside from some candles and/or dimly tinted mood lighting. The music is on point. Everyone around you is impeccably dressed. And they all, like you, made a reservation to be in this room. A few years ago, if you were asked to name the setting we just described, you would have a said the hottest new restaurant or club, and that would have been the end of it. Today, there's another equally viable option to throw into the mix: boutique fitness class. The current workout scene is a far cry from the scenario you would have described not even 10 years ago (re: baggy T-shirts and old gym shoes pounding the treadmill in a massive, television-filled gym). At some point during the past decade, exercise went from a $40 monthly membership that gained you access to a cardio, strength-training, and group fitness class–filled facility to a $40-per-class experience. The average price of a barre class at Physique 57 is $31 to $36. Yoga at Exhale will cost you $37 to $40. A ride with SoulCycle ranges from $30 to $40. In short, being fit can very easily translate into being broke. How did it get so expensive to get a sweat session in? We've asked ourselves that question many times. So, we decided to investigate.

Scroll through to find out what's behind the $30-plus fitness class phenomenon.

Confession time: How much do you spend on working out every month? Tell us in the comments below (no judgment)!