New Kid on the Block: Superstar Gym

Superstar Gym floorI’m not quite sure how it happened—let’s blame geography—but I never wrote a New Kid on the Block post welcoming Superstar Gym to the neighborhood. Founder Joe D’Angelo recently offered to show me around the 3,500-square-foot “boutique personal-training gym” in the northeast corner of Truffles Tribeca. Certainly, few gyms can match the number of street-level windows.

While the gym has classics like a StairMaster, it’s emphasizing the innovative. Most of the equipment is manufactured by D’Angelo’s family, including the orange Canali machines. “They use your body’s own weight instead of weights,” said D’Angelo. “So there’s no suppression of joints, ligaments, or spine.” By the end of the month, there will be a lot more of the orange machines, which are favorites of many European athletes.

There are also Woodway treadmills with slatted belts, so the effect is like running on grass (in other words, easier on your body)—as well as self-powered treadmills. The Bodygreen vibration platform is great for anyone who wants to work his or her whole body—such as stand-up paddleboarders or tennis players. Same with the Twinser wooden platforms (see below left), which help build balance. “The German soccer team uses them,” said D’Angelo. “So do a lot of snowboarders and skiers.”

In the northeast corner are a bunch of self-powered NessfitWorld treadmills, where Superstar Gym holds eight-person Fitwalker classes—treadmill classes with squats and other movements on and off the machine. (You don’t have to be a member.) “This class is more popular in Europe than spinning. They treat it like a disco club, with lights and music and go-go boys and girls. We’re the only place in the U.S. offering it.” Superstar has no plans for go-go dancers just yet….

And coming next week is “VirtuReal Cycling” from a Dutch company called Praxtour. It’s based on the Tour de France—as you pedal the course, going up a hill or to the left or right, the bike moves those directions. Vents can be turned on to simulate the whoosh of the air being passed by. You can even set goals, and when you achieve them, bystanders cheer. (The Giro d’Italia is also available.) Superstar Gym plans on adding virtual-cycling classes, so you can ride with friends.

Finally, Superstar Gym is the first gym to offer DNA fitness testing, said D’Angelo. “You spit in a tube, and you get a book with a recommended diet, information on how your body reacts to various foods and exercises, your caffeine metabolism, your lactose intolerance, vitamin deficiencies, and much more.” The company behind it is Pathway Genomics, and the cost is anywhere from $99 (if your insurance covers it) to $699 for the whole shebang (although you can also buy parts à la carte). And unless you’re planning on changing your genetic material, “You only have to do it once in your lifetime.”

Superstar Gym is at 452 Washington (at Watts), 855-782-7496;

Superstar Gym counterSuperstar Gym Canali machineSuperstar Gym Bodygreen platformSuperstar Gym treadmillsSuperstar Gym west sideSuperstar Gym machinesSuperstar Gym locker room doorSuperstar Gym Twinser platformRecent New Kid on the Block/First Impressions articles:
Telepan Local
Karen Lord Pilates Movement
China Blue
Harley-Davidson of NYC
Bikram Yoga Soho
The Armoury
Flywheel Sports
The Lotus Room at Tamarind Tribeca
Lyons Den Power Yoga
The Little Gym

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