New west end fitness center is offering a free preview as it opens this weekend

FLX Fit Club, a new Ithaca fitness center opened by former staff from Island Health & Fitness, has opened in Clinton West Plaza with a free preview for those who register this month.

“We’ve been doing everything collaboratively from the start,” says instructor Jessica Kerns, one of the former Island staff who hadn’t felt supported by her employers. “It’s been pretty crazy awesome!”

Instructor Jenny Henion, GM Chantelle Farmer, and instructor Carrie Susskind, left to right, at the new FLX Fit Club. 14850 photo by Mark H. Anbinder.

Co-owner and general manager Chantelle Farmer agrees it’s been a collaboration. “We’ve all been working on this together, so even though I’m technically running the show, it’s been a real team effort.”

Also on the team are co-owner Sue Manning and instructors Jenny Henion, Carrie Susskind, Pilar Rodriguez, and Amy Moe.

On the west side of Clinton West Plaza, behind the CVS drug store on South Meadow Street, FLX Fit Club is offering a purely class-focused fitness center based on Les Mills programs. “We all love it, believe in it, and have a lot of experience and training in their programs,” says Farmer of the New Zealand-based, family-owned fitness company named for Olympic athlete Les Mills Sr. “His son developed the idea for the programs about 25 years ago,” she adds, “and named the company after his dad.”

“The quality of the classes is really amazing, and because we don’t have to spend time worrying about creating the classes and finding music,” she says, “we can focus on being awesome, motivating, knowledgeable coaches.”

The club is offering several options for those looking to check it out, from a $12 drop-in rate to class packages of 10 for $100 or 20 for $160, to a $75 monthly membership that offers unlimited classes. “No enrollment fee, no strings attached” for any of the above, Farmer says. Anyone signing up this month, though, gets to enjoy unlimited classes until March 31st.

The drop-in rate is perfect for locals who want to give the facility or its approach a try, or for travelers who are only in town for a few days. “People do these workouts all over the world, and seek them out when they travel or move,” Farmer says.

FLX Fit Club isn’t designed for solo workouts. “We wanted to focus on offering the best group fitness class experience,” Farmer tells us, “so decided not to distract from that with anything like cardio equipment. There are plenty of places in town to get a cheap membership where you can use equipment, if that’s your thing.”

“We don’t think they [Island] know how important group fitness is to their participants,” Kerns says.

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