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WHERE TO WOD: 17 NYC CROSSFIT GYMS YOU SHOULD KNOW

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GABRIELLE KASSEL

APR 15, 2019

Anyone who has ever stepped a foot inside a CrossFit gym knows the workouts take place in a world of their own. With a strong community (estimated at over 4,000 people), undeniable results, and a special lingo (thrusters, AMRAP, Metcon), the workout phenomenon has successfully held onto, and grown, its massive following in NYC.

But whether you’re a CrossFit vet moving to the 917, a WOD (that’s workout of the day) newbie finally giving into the craze, or just a CrossFitter looking to drop into a box, you should know that not all boxes are created equal. Luckily, we scoured the city to bring you a list of the top CrossFit gyms in NYC so you can find the sweat sanctuary that’s best for you.

With 200+ classes each week, over two dozen coaches, and more than 15,000 square feet of space in the Flatiron District, CrossFit NYC is both the largest CrossFit gym in the world and the 16th oldest (it’s even got an UWS outpost with 100+ more classes each week). And CrossFitters at this box range from professional athletes and members of the New York FBI SWAT Team to grandfathers in their mid-70s. Sound too populated to handle? Despite its size, the box is as intimate as it is big with a community of fitness junkies who know each other’s names, root for each other during workouts, and even socialize post WOD. Plus, the box hosts monthly cocktail hour for members to shmooze (aka talk about their paleo diets and the day’s WOD).

ICE NYC is home to CrossFit Below Zero, but this premier functional fitness facility is way more than just a box with special floors that can absorb barbell vibrations and locker rooms with hair-styling amenities. It’s also home to six non-CrossFit classes including ICE Cycle, Arctic Row, TRX, Mobility, Melt Yoga, and HAIL (they’ve got snow jokes). Inspired by the piece of equipment CrossFitters lovingly call the “assault” bike,  the one-of-a-kind ICE Cycle class takes place on and off an Airdyne-style bike and is truly an assault on calories. Check them out at their Upper East Side location for group fitness classes that are all about keeping fitness fun and fresh. And if you happen to be in Antigua and Barbuda, there’s a sister site on Jumby Bay Island. Be warned: you may never leave.

WillyB CrossFit

Gym

With three locations in Brooklyn, WillyB CrossFit is a go-to sweat spot for CrossFit aficionados and newbies alike. With an eight-class on-ramp foundations program, WillyB teaches its new members the mechanics of the basics CrossFit movements. Their philosophy is that once you complete their foundational courses, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge and experience you need to attend more CrossFit classes, safely. Not only that, WillyB is devoted to actually teaching members the movements which, when it comes to swinging and slinging weights around, is pretty damn important. Plus, the gym emphasizes that the sport of fitness is scalable and adaptable for everybody. And we gotta say, we’re here for the inclusivity.

Opened in October 2014, Solace is the city’s high-style, luxury home for snatches and soreness commiserating. This gym offers high-tech floors, locker rooms that top most Manhattan bathrooms, and non-CrossFit classes. With enough square feet to accommodate gymnastics seminars, yoga classes, high-intensity “Body” workouts, and even Olympic lifting-only sessions, Solace is the perfect box for athletes who like a little bit everything with a whole lot of style. As they say: “You only have one body. Train like it.”

BRICK

Gym

While New York City can sometimes feel crowded (especially on the subway), BRICK‘s two-floor, 13,000 square-foot boxes (one in Chelsea and a second in Midtown) ward off any feelings of claustrophobia. These studios feature three fitness spaces, a locker room, lounge, free Wi-Fi, a coffee bar, and even a sauna. And they don’t do one-size-fits-all training — BRICK offers other classes like yoga, bootcamp, mobility training, and Olympic weightlifting. The box prides itself offering elite training in a judgment-free zone that knows when a high-five is due. Big on community, they’ll help athletes push a little hard, move a little longer, and stick with it a little longer.

Looking for a tight-knit group of athletes to push yourself harder? Well, CrossFit Queens is a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive training family. With a community that mirrors Astoria’s inherent diversity, CrossFit Queens is comprised of an eclectic mix of young professionals, performing artists, and military and law enforcement officials. And with an environment that emphasizes camaraderie, CFQ uses enthusiastic cheering and CrossFit Games-level training to deliver all the support you need to achieve amazing results. Plus, with nutrition consults available, CFQ tackles performance holistically.

With a prime location between Bryant Park and the Empire State Building on 37th and 5th Ave., Reebok CrossFit Fifth Ave throws down in a 10,000-square-foot facility attached to a 2,500-square-foot Reebok retail store (Fit-Hub). Whether it’s helping you nail a muscle-up, do an unassisted push-up, or squat body-weight, CrossFit Reebok Fifth Ave is all about helping you do something you’ve never done in your life. The coolest part is that in addition to training with intensity, the athletes here train for longevity, health, but most of all, fun. Expect to get down with this crew outside the box for adventure races, gymnastics games, and charity runs.

EVF is where it’s at for Uptown athletes. With one location at Columbus Circle and a second on the Upper East Side, both EVF gyms are overstocked with top-of-the-line CrossFit equipment so you’ll never lose your mojo waiting around to get your pump on. If you like to sprinkle non-CrossFit workouts into your routine, no worries; enlist in EVF 360, the studio’s signature strength and conditioning class that focuses on light weights and bodyweight movements. Plus, west side members have the added benefit of Row House, a rowing gym that specializes in a high-energy, low-impact workout.

With clients who are big, small, young, old, and everywhere in between, the CrossFit Virtuosity coaches strike the difficult balance between pushing athletes who need motivation, and pulling back athletes who are pushing themselves to the point of injury (major key). Once you step inside this Williamsburg box, you’ll discover things you love, things you hate, and, most importantly, you’ll never get bored. Fitt Tip: the box is also home to the Brooklyn Barbell Club, a community of powerlifters and Olympic lifters who would rather spend Friday night under the bar than at the bar.

Established in 2007, CrossFit South Brooklyn has organically grown into the largest affiliate in the borough. At CFSBK, you are accepted for who you are… then immediately challenged to get better. Which is why the box offers CrossFit classes for 55+, CrossFit Kids classes, and even classes for babies (seriously, it’s basically CrossFit Daycare). Plus, with a space leased out for yoga and Pilates classes on the box’s second floor, CFSB is dedicated to helping athletes train AND recover (there are even opportunities to foam roll, stretch, or actively recover). Got some issues with your tissues or something funky going on with your joints? Physical therapist and chiropractor Dr. Jason Fidler is one floor up and is well-versed in the functional movements that CrossFitters routinely perform — he’ll work wonders with that hip flexor.

CrossFit Concrete Jungle was born in 2013 on Upper East Side, expanded to the Bronx shortly thereafter, and has been safely training athletes ever since. With an emphasis on form, CrossFit Concrete Jungle is all about getting you fit in a safe and supportive environment. Their coaches have years of instructing and competition experience, allowing for sound and quality coaching every step of the way. Their philosophy is simple: learn the foundational movements and A+ form before trying to hit a PR, start feeling amazing, then boom! Personal best power clean.

CrossFit Union Square in the heart of Union Square is all about limiting distractions and maximizing intensity, so they’ve purposely created a no-frills space with a warehouse feel. In addition to the CrossFit staples such as pull-up bars, ropes and rings, free weights, kettlebells, rowers, and jump ropes (and more!), this box also boasts three Eleiko lifting platforms and bumper plates. And yes, their floor is equipped to drop weight, so don’t worry about bailing out of that clean. And after a WOD, it’s not unusual to see this group grab a bite at the Whole Foods Market across the street or shopping in the Reebok store directly above them.

Calling Hell’s Kitchen home, it’s no surprise this box embraces the devil as its mascot and is known for WODs that are spicy. Plus, with multiple classes each day and coaches that are tops, CrossFit Hell’s Kitchen takes the ego out of lifting with down-to-earth and form-focused coaches. The blistering workouts and encouraging coaches are the reason that once people go to the underworld, they stay there.

Bowery CrossFit is not just about what you do with your body during a workout, but how you treat it afterward. This spot built a legit farm right outside the city, and it’s one of the few CrossFit gyms in the world to offer farm-fresh vegetables delivered right to the gym for members. And with its prime location in Chinatown, there is no limit to post-WOD dinner options with your new fit fam. Bowery CrossFit also offers a one-of-a-kind, six-week Women’s Challenge Program for ladies interested in transforming their bodies and minds in an empowering, ego-free, and energizing community.

CrossFit SOBRO was the first to bring CrossFit to the Bronx community. SOBRO’s membership is rich in diversity with athletes hailing from all parts of Boogie Down and outer boroughs that all different fitness goals. And with every kettlebell swing, thruster, pull-up, and run around the block, the community grows stronger. Not only do they run, drop heavy weights, and whip out gymnastics movements, they’ll scream your name whenever you’re trying to get that squat out of the hole. They are #sobrostrong and proud of it.

This Greenpoint spot is the go-to box of any Brooklynites living right off the G train. CrossFit Greenpoint is dedicated to challenging athletes and cultivating a community of support. With House rules like “respect each other’s time”, “support your fellow members”, “treat the gym as if it was your home”, “listen to your coaches”, and “be respectful of the neighborhood”, CFGP takes no bullshit when it comes to courtesy, respect, and support. Don’t you dare forget to say “thank you”.

After opening their doors on Valentine’s Day in 2012, Astoria’s CrossFit Dynamix embraced the motto, “Change your fitness. Change your life”. The box teaches its athletes to live… like really live. With a mandatory foundations class, this box is all about building strength and fitness from the ground up. After foundations, they train their athletes to efficiently bike, run, row, and swim, emphasize Olympic weightlifting, and encourage athletes to explore a variety of sports to take their new healthy bod for a spin. And for people who would rather fight their way to fitness, the studio also offers a boxing class that focuses on combat-style conditioning.

**Updated by Maddie Flager, December 2018

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