I first discovered Boom Cycle last winter, after breaking my wrist. I had needed surgery and found out it would be months before I would be able to get back on my bike. I had a number of big cycling events planned and hated that I was losing fitness. A friend suggested I try a spin class. Not really being one for peppy group classes, I wasn’t sure it would be for me but figured I may as well give it a try.
I walked into the dark studio not really knowing what to expect, but once the class started I was immediately hooked. It was sweaty, loud and so much fun!
Boom Cycle has developed a fantastic reputation for its fiercer than fierce attitude, dark lights and pumping music, and most importantly it’s instructors. You walk out of the class feeling like you have just spent an intense hour on the dance floor, not just another boring session at your local gym.
It immediately became clear to me why Boom has such a cult following. To learn more about how Boom Cycle started and the benefits to cyclists, I spoke to founder Hilary Gilbert.
How did Boom Cycle start?
We really wanted to change the way that Londoners viewed fitness, instead of needing a monthly membership we wanted to bring them an epic workout at a time that suited them when they wanted it, hence the pay as you go, model. We also wanted them to connect with fitness in a different way, rather than focussing on the physical aspect we wanted to show how positive a force fitness can be on the mind. By combining the pay as you go model with our high-energy, music-focussed experience we can start to improve the lifestyle as a whole and make sure it’s a habit for life not for Jan & Feb!
How did you initially get into Spin?
I initially got into spin in NYC about 14 years ago as it was a more fun and more efficient way to stay sample size while I was modeling. I also quickly realised how mentally uplifted and focused I was after a great class and I was hooked. I’ve never stopped since then.
What makes BOOM Cycle different?
BOOM Cycle is different for a few reasons.
We put the class together like a Dj set. We carefully select and arrange the music to support a fun, HIIT-inspired cardio program and implement specialised inspirational coaching throughout to empower all of our riders. BOOM Cycle has also grown into a very close-knit community of like-minded people who hold each other up and inspire one another.
What is the most rewarding aspect of what you do?
The most rewarding aspect of BOOM Cycle for me is witnessing people becoming empowered and changing their lives. We are in the business of building people up and helping them develop and realise new levels of strength.
What is the biggest challenge you have undertaken?
Being the first of this level in the market was extremely challenging. There was nothing similar in the UK to base our planning on. The US market was built and growing, but the English consumer is extremely different to the American consumer. They are not convinced by fads and we needed to prove the value of the BOOM Cycle experience to them.
Your most memorable moment since launching BOOM Cycle?
The first few times I saw the whole room packed and moving in one motion was an epic feeling. IN fact, it still moves me beyond belief. It’s the BEST high ever!
Also, when we realised we built such a fabulous team within BOOM Cycle made of people who were all such dedicated and inspiring individuals.
These were two of the moments when I thought, wow, we’ve really done something here.
What are the benefits of spin classes to athletes, in particular, cyclists?
The benefits are the same for everyone from those newly embarking on their fitness journey to the very experienced. Fat loss and toning, better management of stress and feeling better all around mentally and physically. A lot of riders report feeling more confident after week or two of riding with us.
Who inspires you?
Our riders inspire me – their dedication, their individual power and watching so many of them achieve so much. It makes all the stressful and hard time totally worth it.