This looks familiar…

Anyone a fan of SoulCycle? Half of San Francisco and New York? Anyone making over 90K with under 25 years of life? I see you consultants…

Well, I personally have been generally offended by the price of SoulCycle, but every time I’ve gone I’ve hated how much I’ve loved it. It’s cult-y and fake-ish but just so damn addicting. And the worst part is I was going to be a spin instructor, and I was never as good as them! Nor do I think I ever could be. Le sigh.

For those of you who do not know the cult… it’s a peppy spinning class chain with cutesy skull icon apparel and yellow bikes and yummy candles. It looks like this (thanks Google images)

soul cycle 2 soul cycle 3 soul cycle

It’s $30 bucks per 45 minute sessions, and it CRUSHES. Dominates. Chicks lose their shit over this. But it’s really only made it in NY and SF (and a bit in LA), likely due to the high concentration here of tight little bodies willing to pay such figures.

Thus, imagine my surprise when I was perusing through Palermo Hollywood and found this nugget (you were probably wondering how this was going to relate to Argentina…)

Rockcycle Rockcycle2 rockcycle3 rockcycle4

If the similarities are not glaring to you by these pictures, let me tell you, it was identical, save the blue colors on the outside. Same layout, same yellow, same skulls, same candles, same cycle room layout, same words on walls, identical. To the T. I dashed in (and not just because they strategically placed a gorgeous blue eyed Argentine at the front desk) and immediately inundated the poor fellow with questions. Have you heard of SoulCycle? Um, duh. Is this SoulCycle? No, it’s RockCycle, as you can see by our sign. Is this… legal? Yes, we purchased the rights to it. (No, you definitely didn’t, but my common sense kicked it at this point). How much are you!?? $125 pesos. Approximately $10. First instinct, not bad. Upon later reflection.. my personal trainer is $150 pesos an hour. $125 is most definitely not good. Who are your clients? Mostly expats. Dots… connected. Who else would pay half a day’s salary for a 45 minute class? Someone who’s paid in dollars, that’s who.

Now, I have not partaken in one of these surely-miraculous knock off SoulCycle classes yet, so take all this with a grain of salt. But I should elaborate on my level of excitement. I do not pay $35 for SoulCycle in America, because Crunch gym’s free spin classes are allllmost as good. Which is to say, they’re great. I’ve been hard pressed to find a BAD spin class in all my spin class days. They’re just all pretty similar (as opposed to, say, yoga, which really has no rhyme or reason to what it means to each person. Sometimes its a crazy workout, sometimes it’s laying down breathing).

Alas, in Argentina, they really do not do spin. First of all, the spin classrooms are straight out of the ’80s. Posters look 80s-tastic, bikes are from the 80s, and no one seems to have learned about sports bras, let alone spin shoes. Whatever, fine. The 80’s were a lovely time.

The unfortunate part, is they have not learned about teaching. Or music. A 45 minute class is chronically 10 minutes late (mind you this is Megatlon, the most expensive gym in this country). If a SoulCycle instructor started class 10 minutes late, there would be riots and she would be fired. Do NOT waste my time at 6:30 am. These moments are precious and must be used to torch last night’s dulce de leche. Upon starting the music, the teacher casually tells students to begin “cycling” while she walks around to saludar la gente. A little peck on the cheek and polite charla for each student, as well as some adjustments that may or may not be needed, takes up another 5-10 minutes. Good, we’re halfway through class and we haven’t started.

Teacher then begins “teaching.” Teaching and music are unrelated, and at random intervals she’ll alert you to stand, sit, increase resistance, or relax. She will randomly call out “8” or “9” which appear to be RPMs per 10 seconds, but people seem to take them as 8=slow and 9=fast. There will often be minutes without any spoken words. Often as well, my favorite, the teacher will simply time one minute intervals and say “now do something different for a minute!” “Good! Now do something else for a minute!” Bitch, I have a watch. If i wanted to frolick on my own schedule, I wouldn’t have sat in YOUR class.

Class may or may not end on schedule. There may or may not be stretching. A 45 minute class may go anywhere from 40 minutes to an hour and a half, and the teacher will look shocked and alarmed if you get up to leave at the scheduled time due to something like say, your schedule.

It should be noted that I still attend these classes. Cycling is generally always a good workout, and it’s easy to tune out the weird shit the teacher says every now and then when she’s speaking another language. Doing your own thing is mostly the point of the class anyways, so it’s all bueno.

I did take one “GAP” (gluteos, abdominales, y piernas, basically a knock off of America’s fondly named “gutts butts and thighs”) class with a little gay man who had fanTAStic rhythm, and spent the 10 minutes following class trying to teach him to teach spin. I’m sure there is someone in this country who can match songs to pedal strokes, but they just don’t teach at Megatlon. RockCycle, I have big hopes for you.

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