23 November 2013


I have to admit:  I have never been much of an indoor cyclist.  When I was racing, and when I was working out, I used to have a set of rollers for the winter.  But I've never owned an exercise bike and I've never taken a "spin" class.

"Spin" classes, to me, always seemed to be the bastard children of cycling and gyms.  From what I have seen, those who ride in "spin" classes may be getting great cardio workouts, but never mount bicycles they can ride from one place to another.  They also seem to want a gym that looks more like a cross between a disco and a boutique rather than one like the one in which I used to lift weights. Frankly, that place--located on a Brooklyn corner that hadn't yet gentrified-- was a dungeon, but I didn't mind:  I wasn't there to be seen.  The "spinsters" would not allow themselves to be caught dead in such a place.

The folks who designed Swerve must have understood that when they were designing their new studio.  Co-owner Eric Posner says, in different words, that his new venture is meant for "an individual to come and potentially meet people."  Those who come with other people can "compete together and hang out afterwards."

The funny thing is that although our workouts were solitary, I often found myself "competing together" and hanging out with some of the people who worked out alongside me in what we used to call "the sweatshop".  The difference, I guess, is that most of us didn't go there looking for dates.  (At least, I don't think most did.  I know I didn't.)  And if we had coffee afterward, it was in a real old-school luncheonette (Does anybody use that term anymore) a couple of doors away.

And some of us rode home--sometimes alone, sometimes together.