It’s a week into the new year, and regardless of your stance on New Year’s Resolutions, it’s difficult not to be taken over with feelings of optimism and improvement. For instance: I bought apples yesterday. I don’t necessarily love apples but something moved me to buy them on the spot, and I’m pretty sure it was the collective conscience telling me to be healthy. Which isn’t a bad idea! So, for the next few weeks, we at the Stoop will be talking about ways to get healthy in the neighborhood, focusing on local gyms, nutrition tips, and general wellness. First up: Slope Fitness.
(In the interest of transparency, I should mention that I’ve been a happy member at Slope Fitness since November.)
7:00am-8:00pm Saturday & Sunday
Day care: 9:00am-2:00pm, seven days a week
Annual membership: $89/month
Month-to-Month membership: $99/month
One-time enrollment fee: $99 for an annual plan, $199 for a month to month plan
The gym does not offer free guest passes, which Michael explains is for the sake of the current members.
“I don’t want the floor to be cluttered,” he says. “But I give everybody a safety net.”
He refers to the 7-day money back guarantee which allows cancellation without any fee, more than doubling the state-mandated 3-day trial period. Another option for those who are unsure are the day passes: $25 for a full day, $20 if coming in with a member, and $15 if coming in during “happy hour” (Friday, Saturday, or Sunday after 4:00pm). If the guest decides to sign up, the cost of the pass is put towards the enrollment fee.
50% off enrollment fee: what they’re calling the “New Year’s Solutions” program
Slope Fitness offers state-of-the-art cardio equipment and weight machines, as well as free weights and a very cool, super fun Jacob’s Ladder. There are currently twenty different group classes to choose from, including Spin, Yoga, Pilates, Zumba, Boot Camp, and a Fight Club (!).
Both locker rooms are pristine and fitted with wet saunas, giving the whole thing a spa feel.
Complimentary tea and coffee are available by the front desk, along with water and snacks for purchase.
Free daycare is provided seven days a week, complete with a monitoring system which allows parents to check in on their kids without actually leaving the machine.
Personal trainers are available, and each member is given one free session. Beyond this, Michael is emphatic about not pushing it on the customers.
“If you want to continue with a trainer, we’ll get you the prices. We’ll work with you. If you ever have a question, I’m here six, seven days a week. Come grab my arm and I’ll show you what to do. I have a couple clients myself.”
And in a recent partnership with All Seasons, Slope now provides on-site access to physical therapy.
All of these amenities notwithstanding, Michael’s greatest pride seems to come from the sense of community that Slope Fitness has fostered. It’s an ideal he has maintained since he began as Senior Membership Advisor in December 2011, when the gym was still S Clubs.
“Everybody on my staff is family,” he says. “My members, I consider family. The people who work with me– they wouldn’t be here if they weren’t great people. Everybody here, regardless of title or position, all do the same thing. We make sure that everybody comes here to a clean, friendly, inviting experience.”
It isn’t just talk, either. Four members enter while I’m chatting with Michael, and he greets each by name. And even though three weeks passed between the day I started and my second visit (whoops!), Michael recognized and welcomed me when I returned. Members chat before group classes and in the locker rooms. The efforts toward creating a familial environment are clearly working.
THE BOTTOM LINE
If you’re looking for a smaller gym with a distinctly neighborhood-y feel, Slope is the place for you. The place is clean, the staff is friendly, and it will whip you into shape.
Photos of sauna and stationary bikes via slopefit.com