In celebration of Women’s History Month, Blink Fitness is offering free weight training across the city, and membership is not required.
Each Wednesday evening in March, the gym chain is offering a free “Empower Hour,” which will educate participants on using weight room equipment. The sessions, led by Blink personal trainers, are designed to empower women to feel comfortable trying weight lifting, though everyone is welcome, regardless of their gender.
The training is aimed at both newbies and experienced gym-goers who want to work on their technique.
The sessions will take place at all Blink locations in the Bronx and across NYC on Wednesdays from 7 p.m.-8 p.m. Registration is available on a first come, first serve basis, for up to 15 people per session. Signing up on this form guarantees a spot, according to Blink spokesperson Stephanie Driscoll, and prospective trainees will be notified if the sessions are full. Signing up by the Monday of the session week is recommended.
According to the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), women historically shied away from weight training because of stigmas, yet weight lifting has gained popularity among women in the past decades.
Weight training can help people develop good movement patterns and pain reduction, improve self-confidence, increase their resting metabolic rate, improve bone health and decrease the risk of diabetes and heart disease, according to NASM.
The first Empower Hour session, on March 8, offered instruction on back and bicep workouts. This week, on March 15, instruction will be focused on chest, shoulder and tricep muscles. On March 22, the focus will be abdomen muscles. The last session on March 29 will hit legs and glutes.
Participants should wear clothes they can exercise in, and can come for any or all of the sessions.
Blink Fitness has 12 locations in the Bronx and one in neighboring Yonkers in Westchester County. There are also 12 in Manhattan, nine in Queens and 15 in Brooklyn.
The Empower Hour program is open to members and non-members alike, and for those interested in joining Blink Fitness, membership costs can differ based on location, according to the gym’s website.
The East Tremont and West Fordham locations have plans starting at $17 per month with a $59.99 annual maintenance fee, while the lowest tier plan at the Parkchester and Fordham locations cost $22. The Hunts Point location doesn’t offer the lowest tier, with plans starting at $27 per month, according to the gym website.
According to a January 2021 Vice report, the gym chain had a reputation of a difficult membership cancellation process. But after a state Senate bill went into effect in February 2021 that prohibits certain auto-renewal practices, the gym started allowing customers to request membership cancellations online — rather than just by snail mail or in-person.
However, Blink customers in New York state still have to pay their membership fees through a 45-day notice period and also pay a $60 “buy-out fee” when they cancel, according to the company’s cancellation policy.
Reach Aliya Schneider at [email protected] or (718) 260-4597. For more coverage, follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram @bronxtimes