Gym rats to flood Flatbush

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Photo by Bryan Bruchman

A new Flatbush gym is bringing self-serve to the fitness industry.

Blink Fitness, a budget spin-off of upscale gym company Equinox, plans to offer $15-a-month gym memberships at its two new Flatbush locations this winter — but to keep prices so low, you’ll be responsible for basic amenities.

“There’s no group fitness classes, no store retail, no towel service, and only four showers in each locker room,” said Dos Condon, the vice president of the company, which will charge an annual fee of about $30 for each membership.

But if you’re ready to break a sweat, the gym will feature the normal slate of weight machines, free weights, and cardio equipment.

The two gyms will be located at Flatbush and Nostrand Avenue, and Flatbush Avenue and Linden Boulevard — areas that are considered fitness center deserts.

The city does not have a recreation facility in the area; and the YMCA on Flatbush Avenue near Farragut Road costs $41 dollars a month.

Brooklyn College’s gym is roughly $50 a month for community members.

Condon says the neighbors are cheering his company’s arrival.

“The reception of the communities has been so positive and encouraging.” said Condon.

Community leaders applauded the development, but said the city should do more to provide cost effective exercise options for the residents of the area.

“In these difficult fiscal times, families find it difficult to budget for extra things like sport club fees,” said Councilman Jumaane Williams (D–Flatbush). “[We should pursue] a full-service community center, where low-income residents and local youth can utilize facilities for nominal yearly fees.”

The lack of places to workout could be part of the reason that Flatbush residents are suffering from elevated rates of obesity.

Twenty-six percent of Flatbush residents are obese — three percentage points more than the average for Brooklyn, city statistics show.

Reach reporter Eli Rosenberg at erosenberg@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2531. And follow him at twitter.com/emrosenberg.