There are SO many gyms in New York, it’s truly outrageous. Depending on what you want, you can find just about everything you’re looking for including (but not limited to) NYC Goat Yoga. Seriously.
So, starting from closest-to-what-Josh-likes and moving through to things-Josh-can’t-believe-exists… A thing to remember also, most of these gyms offer free or really cheep trial periods from one visit to a week of visits. They’re definitely worth doing, and I recommend doing them at the times you’d normally want to go to the gym. In a city of so many people, numbers fluctuate WILDLY between cold wintery mornings and mild Sundays.
1. Planet Fitness
The bare necessities.
It’s the one that I thought of before I moved to New York for some reason, it must have been in a number of TV shows or movies. Planet Fitness is all about judgment-free working out without all the trimmings. There ARE some group activities throughout the week though if that’s your thing!
How much? $21.99/month will get you access to all of the gyms “worldwide” and the ability to bring a guest any time to the gym for free. The other option is the crazy low $10/month which will get you in the door and onto a treadmill (massage chairs not included).
There’s generally a LIMITED TIME ONLY signup deal (going basically constantly) for $1 signup for your first month.
2. Blink Fitness
Lots of equipment, lots of locations, and you’re on your own.
You will have seen this gym all over four of the five boroughs of New York (sorry Staten Island). This is the gym that has all the things you need, in good working order, for a very low price. What it doesn’t have is any form of classes. This gym is for the solo workout-er who just wants to watch their episode of TV on the elliptical and be done with it… So… Me…
How much? $26/month will get you access to ALL of Blink’s 80+ locations, and the ability to bring a guest, for free, every time you go. The downside is that you have to sign-up for a year to take advantage of this. Not really a downside, but you know, full disclosure!
Your other option is $25/month which includes only one location, and no guests, but the upside is that you can do it month-by-month!
Signup is generally $1, just like Planet Fitness.
I am a member of Blink Fitness and don’t get anything from them, but I have had a good experience with their gyms so far!
3. Crunch Fitness
Classes, bright, fun, good, happy.
This gym is another one you’ll find scattered all over the city and keeps its spaces clean and BRIGHT. Unlike Blink, Crunch offers more in the ways of classes, some extra features like steam rooms and saunas at some locations, and also has special events throughout the week with DJs and special guests for their group training classes.
There’s a bit more of a community vibe going on as well so this one is good if you’re used to being part of a gym that brings you into the family.
How much? Around $130/month will get you access to all the Crunch locations (there’s an option for CITY or ALL both for $130/month and they wouldn’t tell me me why you’d ever go CITY without calling a “membership officer”… No thank you).
$45-105/month is your other option for one location, depending on where exactly you are in the city, and there’s normally a signup fee of $300 which disappears at different times throughout the year (January especially, so check in ASAP).
4. New York Sports Club (“NYSC”)
I found this more in my research than I’ve seen them on the streets…
There are so many locations of this one, it shocked me that I wasn’t more familiar with them.
These gyms are choc-full of classes and amenities that will make your gym-going experience a bit of a delight, if I’m honest. They even have courts for those of you who want to play!
How much? Commit for a year and it’s around $50/month for one location of $90 for all the locations (more for month-to-month). At the moment they’re running a $1 sign-up as well!
5. YMCA (“The Y”)
Comma, it’s fun to stay at the… If you have a family and are close to one
I’ll start with the downside (because the gyms are pretty solid): There aren’t many of them, and they’re not crazy fancy for the price. You do however get fresh towels which are always nice, classes included, and they will in most locations look after your kids while you work-0ut! The benefits are there, you just need to make sure it aligns with exactly what you want and where it is. So go on a tour, they’re always happy for you to do that. Limited guest passes available too with each membership.
How much? It’s $106/month to go to all the city-wide locations, and their website allows you to check which ones you want to visit and it should give you a pretty good breakdown.
Individual gyms start from $45/month and signup fees are normally about $75 (unless you get one of the deals going).
6. New York Health & Racquet Club
Come for the squash, stay for the amenities
If you’re a fan of squash, or racquetball, or basketball, or saltwater pools, or saunas… This is probably your go to. Just like the Y, there aren’t many of these dotted around the city (9 of them if I could correctly) but if you do have one close-by, reports from friends are that they’re extremely nice to be around.
Filled with classes, and more group activities than most (because squash on your own is basically just exercise and who wants that!?), we’re moving into the slightly fancier end of gym.. But only a little.
How much? This one all comes down to how long you’re willing to sign a contract for. The membership is more of a back-and-forth than some others so you will want to read the terms pretty carefully but from my reading. In fact… I’ve put the terms from their website on the right because it’s difficult for me to work out the exact number (which really tells you something). I think it starts at about $109/month and goes up from there if you want access to more locations and less contractual obligations!
7. NY Goat Yoga
Not as ridiculous as it sounds. Not as ridiculous as Equinox.
“NEW YORK’S FIRST-EVER GOAT YOGA COMPANY” – You have to love that.
This one’s about a 4 hour drive out of New York City, so you have to really want this, but it does come with little kid goats for you to workout with, who wouldn’t want that!?
How much? Well the Uber will set you back probably a fair bit, but some of these classes come with wine tasting, or cheese tasting, and start at $25pp! What a bargain!
Are you eager to talk ABOUT the gym more than you go to it? I moved Equinox to number 92 because of the silliness.
Cards on the table, I don’t get it. Sure, it’s more exclusive and you can probably get some delicious cocktails after a stroll on the treadmill, but for me this one seems like an expense that doesn’t make sense (my favorite thing is that the pictures of the gym on their website, don’t contain people working out, or gym equipment, or . a gym, but instead a rooftop looking over the Hudson).
I know, I know, it’s really nice! But it’s a gym! If you were paying for exclusive bar access, I’d be happy to fork over the cash.
How much? Well this is a fun question because each different Equinox gym is different, and finding the prices on their website would require a degree in literature or a detective’s badge in the NYPD. The website requires you to come in and have an appointment as opposed to just saying “here’s how much it costs” (at least for some of the locations).
Joining fee is around $3-500, and then depending on which location you want to tell your friends about at drinks on Friday, it will cost north of $180/month. No deals that I could find at the moment except $100 to spend at the shop… In Equinox…