Dallas is a city of go-getters. We knew this, but now there’s proof. Fitness and wellness platform ClassPass on Wednesday released its annual year-end summary of user workout trends. Per the 2021 report, Houstonians were more likely to invite a friend to a class, Austinites were most likely to sneak in a lunch-hour workout, but Dallasites on average booked more fitness reservations this year than any other American city.
While we’re more than happy to claim the top spot, people across the country have been booking more classes this year. That’s perhaps not surprising, considering this year also saw the availability of vaccines that lower the chances of becoming infected with COVID-19. Since January, ClassPass fitness reservations have grown by 329 percent, according to the report.
Also, “people don’t want to work out by themselves anymore,” says Roger Hendren, owner of CycleBar Uptown Dallas.
And, according to ClassPass, he’s right. The app’s data found that 58 percent of users have met up with a friend for an in-person class. It says 81 percent report pushing themselves harder in a group setting, and two-thirds say in-person classes make it easier to maintain a routine.
Hendren says he sees many riders come to cycling classes at his studio with a buddy. People also make friends in the session.
“People hold each other accountable,” he says. “And they’re more likely to stay with a program they ride with where they like the people they ride with.”
To put it more simply: “Its more fun to be in a group fitness.”
However, ClassPass isn’t just spouting support of the buddy system. The most popular workouts included strength training, yoga, and cycling, all of which fell in the top three “most bookings” spots. Dance cracked the top 10 for the first time. Other highlights include 70 percent of workers stopping by the studio on work-from-home days and the rise of YouTuber Lauren Giraldo’s 12-3-30 treadmill routine (12 percent incline, 3.0 speed for 30 minutes—it’ll burn, trust us) on TikTok.
Additionally, the report suggested people have modified their routines with new hybrid systems at work. The most popular workout time is 5:30 p.m. as people leave the office—57 percent of users get in a studio workout on their way home—but lunch-hour sessions are more likely to occur on days when employees are working from home.
Evening classes have always been popular, says Hendren, although he thinks people will eventually choose a gym closer to work or to home. (“People don’t want to drive.”) And while he admits lunchtime cycling enthusiasm depends on the instructor, he agrees with the popularity of middle-of-the day classes.
People like to “have a nice pause that refreshes” halfway through the workday, especially with flexible WFH hours, Hendren says, and folks who are used to rolling out of bed and signing in “don’t want to get up in the morning.”
Plus, it frees up the evening for other activities.
Hendren says the most dedicated riders have a fixed routine, but there is optimism among fellow studio owners that the worst of the pandemic is over and more people are going to head back to the studio as they get more comfortable with COVID-19 protocols.
“During COVID, there was a lot of people that decided everyone’s just going to migrate to Peloton. They’re just gonna do it from home,” he says. “And that just isn’t the case.”
Read the full report here.