The East End Spinning Wars

B-East is the little Spin studio that could. You’ll find it down the alley next to D’Canela on Main Street in Amagansett, or access it by the back parking lot behind Mary’s Marvelous. Either way you’re in for the ride of your life. Romaine Gordon, a feisty redhead and former teacher with Zonehampton, founded B-East in 2009. “I jumped off the cliff,” says Romaine, smiling. And landed on her feet, or bike. Real Rider Bikes, by the way, which move (you heard me) from side to side and engage your core strength. Romaine brings her personal trainer experience with her to B-East. “I was an athlete forever, I taught horseback riding too,” she says. But until you’ve saddled yourself on a bike, with Romaine in the front of the room leading the ride, challenging you, spurring you on, you have no idea what a workout you can get.

I walked into B-East and Romaine’s staff set me up on a bike, after they were wiped down, while Romaine chatted with her pleased and sweaty riders from the previous class. I asked how much the bikes move (I had heard; I was a little scared). I was assured I could not fall off. Cycle shoes snapped in, there was no likelihood of that. I was set up at the right height for me (this is key, by the way) and I set off spinning my wheel. I was ready to spin!

The lights were dimmed the music pumped up and Romaine got everyone going. “Everyone feels like they are a part of something social. You are in a race, sometimes two sides of the room competing, or you’re on an obstacle course,” says Romaine. So we were going around make-believe cones, pulling our bikes from side to side, it was intense. I pulled, but not much happened. Gotta work that core. But I did get that feeling that Romaine strives for in her Spin class. I was part of a bigger ride than my own. [expand]

Try your hand (or seat rather) at B-East Fitness Studio for $25 a class or 10 classes for $250. b@eastfit.com, 631-267-0900. Water and towels are complimentary for your ride. Thanks, Romaine, you are the infinite Spinner!

Flywheel on 27 in East Hampton, outside the village, 65 Montauk Highway, is the former Ride The Zone, with classes led by Master Instructor Marion Roaman. The two spin studios merged “a smooth transition,” Marion tells me. “Mostly the same teachers as before.” Former Giants player Tiki Barber started flywheel and the first one was opened with Ruth Zuckerman in the Flatiron Building in NYC in 2010. Flywheel has three-tiered stadium seating with Schwinn bikes and TorqBoards. On each bike is a little screen that measures your performance or RPMs, average speed, and calories burned, and it monitors your resistance. This is all up on a giant screen in the front of the room for you to see in “real time.” If you want. Or not. The choice is yours. The TorqBoard is also a tracker of all cyclists in the race in the class. So if you are competitive you will love it! Or even if you’re not, it’s fun. “Train and watch the numbers or just ride to great music and have fun,” says Marion.

Flywheel’s program is “innovative, different and cutting edge,” Marion says. “I certainly wasn’t bored with spinning, this just brought it to a new level. You can come in and for 45 minutes, feel empowered and strong and healthy.” I have to agree. I was back in my own zone riding in the dimly lit room to great music Marion chooses herself. She led the ride and I followed along, inspired by her prompts and amazing singing voice. Yep, she sings and rides.

Even Colin Quinn was impressed. I didn’t know he was in the class and you wouldn’t either. You are there to ride not gawk, and ride you will! Take your pick, Flywheel East Hampton, Flywheel at Sag Harbor Gym or the three NYC Flywheel locations. Check out a “power cleanse” ride. www.flywheelsports.com, 631-324-8622. $30 a class, $275 for 10. Water and towels, complimentary. Thanks, Marion, still amazing and the one who got me on a bike. Wow.

Soul Cycle in East Hampton offers a “mind/body experience,” along with their Spin classes that will also kick your butt, same as above. Enter this studio at 66 Newtown Lane, in the back parking lot of Babette’s, and be immersed in the aromatherapy scent of a burning candle at the front desk. Everything is very white and the staff is very friendly and helpful. I was ready for my Spin and curious about the “Candlelight Ride.” MB was the teacher for my class and she was ready! A large candle burned on her platform, the lights were dimmed and off we went! I was helped first to get to the right height on my bike for me by Charlotte, the sweetest staff member. She took my bag for me and stored it in a locker. I clicked my shoes into the pedals and I closed my eyes and got into the beginning of the ride. MB got us psyched from the start. Music was blaring, candles were burning and I opened my eyes as we stood up and pedaled to the beat. I sat down in the saddle when instructed and sprinted like crazy. I glanced at the white walls with large black words as I pedaled. “Exhale Expectation. Sweat through…the hum of the wheel….” On the other wall in giant letters I read: “Warrior. Rock Star.” Yes, I thought, yes!

Soul Cycle founders Elizabeth Cutler and Julie Rice started Soul Cycle in Manhattan in 2006. The Barns at Butter Lane have the Bridgehampton Soul Cycle, where there is a beachy feel and a deck where Soul cyclists gather after their ride. There are 71 bikes in the barn there. Back at East Hampton, manager Anthony Franjoine explained to me about the Soul Cycle method, which is “mind-body spirit,” and the candles of course. “Lighting is big here,” he says. “It’s all about you when you ride.” The 60 Schwinn Evolution bikes are branded with the Soul Cycle logo on the wheel. You can also buy jackets, tees, tanks and cycle shorts, all branded with Soul Cycle. Water and towels are complimentary too. Free shoe rental. Free face/body spritzes during class. $36 a class. 10 classes $340. And yes there will be famous people Spinning here too, but it’s your ride, your workout, not the Oscars. Go “take your journey, find your soul.” www.soul-cycle.com, 631-324-6660 or in Bridgehampton, 631-537-3630. Thanks, Gabby, I had fun! Much gratitude.

I know, not much of a “wars” story, but hey, it’s summer, lighten up. And feel lighter, stronger and ride like the wind at your choice of Spin studios. [/expand]

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