A Philly Trainer Wants to Open a “Social Impact Fitness Studio” in West Philly

Set Fitness is designed to give everyone — no matter their financial situation, sexual orientation, body type, gender, or ethnicity — access to high-quality fitness.

set fitness

Nicole Koedyker, center, is the founder of Set Fitness. Photograph courtesy Set Fitness

In a perfect world, there would be no barriers for anyone to take care of their bodies — all fitness would be free, inclusive, and comfortable for everyone, regardless of their socioeconomic status, size, sexual orientation, or skin color.

Unfortunately, that’s too often far from the reality we live in. The $30 price tags on boutique fitness classes are out of reach for many, while the homogeneous appearance of the wellness world in studios, marketing images, media, and social media can make people feel like they need to be a certain size, shape, gender, or ethnicity in order to participate. But a new studio, Set Fitness, which hopes to open its doors in West Philadelphia in Summer 2020, is looking to break these barriers.

Set Fitness, founded Nicole Koedyker — a Philly group fitness instructor with a background in community engagement and building social enterprises — is currently working to raise the funds necessary to open its doors via the crowd-sourcing platform ifundwomen.com. Koedyker’s dream is for Set Fitness to offer the luxury boutique fitness experience in an environment that’s truly inclusive‚ at a price point that’s approachable.

We like to imagine Set Fitness as a ‘lab’ where members of all experience levels can find something to love and maybe even venture into something new,” says Koedyker. Initially their offerings will popular LES MILLS classes such as Bodypump, GRIT, and BodyCombat, as well as spinning. As they grow, they will be bringing in instructors to teach yoga, barre, HIIT, dance, powerlifting workshops, mobility and movement trainings, and more.

“Set Fitness will provide a variety of classes that many small boutique gyms don’t usually offer and provide an affirming space for members, instructors and trainers that identify as LGBTQIA+, Black and Indigenous People of Color, differently abled, big bodied or fat identifying, non-gender conforming and their allies (or co-conspirators),” she adds.

Just how affordable will classes be? Set Fitness’ memberships will be lower cost than traditional boutique fitness classes, but they’ll also offer sliding-scale memberships for people from different socioeconomic backgrounds, a pay-it-forward model for members who want to help contribute to another person’s membership, and a work-trade option if you can spare a few hours a week to help them upkeep the space in exchange for classes.

For standard memberships (12 classes per month) and class packs (10 or 20 classes), pricing will range for $12 to $15 per class. For members that utilize the sliding scale, this will obviously vary greatly, but it will start at $10 per month for a standard membership and scale up.

“We hope that members that join our community are able to identify a pricing level that works for their own situation and understand that if they are able to pay the standard or premium membership rates, it subsidizes those who cannot afford the full price,” Koedyker says.

Their crowdfunding campaign, live until August 9th, is growing toward their $20,000 goal, but they still need support. While they are offering early-bird pricing for class packs and memberships on the website, they will also be pre-selling memberships in early 2020 (“the crowdfunding is the early early pricing,” she explains). Excited about Set Fitness’ mission? There’s also a crowdfunding reward that grants you first access to their upcoming fall pop-up workout series if you want to join the community ASAP.

Visit the Set Fitness website here and check out their crowdfunding campaign here.