Is Derek Jeter Going to Teach Cycling Classes at 24 Hour Fitness Clubs in the Off Season?
-- by Jessica Flint
- October 6, 2009
Derek Jeter at the 24 Hour Fitness club on Crosby Street, in New York City. Photograph by Justin Bishop.
“They know that when I come into the club they have to play hip-hop,” said Derek Jeter when I recently met up with the Yankees’s shortstop in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood. Jeter wasn’t talking about a nightclub in Manhattan’s flashy Meatpacking District, nor was he commenting on his baseball team’s clubhouse in the Bronx. No, he was referring to his line of health clubs. Yes, his: The slugger has three co-branded 24 Hour Fitnesses in Manhattan.
This isn’t 24 Hour Fitness’s first experimentation with a celebrity partner—the around-the-clock chain has also teamed up with Lance Armstong, Shaquille O’Neal, and Andre Agassi, among other athletes. This is, however, the health club’s first celebrity gym in the city that doesn’t sleep. Jeter’s first two locations, one near Madison Square Park and the other in Midtown, debuted about a year-and-a-half ago, but the SoHo club only recently opened its doors.
At first glance, there are a few reasons Jeter’s gym SoHo gym differs from other health clubs in the city. Take, for example, the artwork. After entering via the elevator, it is hard to miss the huge glossy black-and-white picture of the four-time World Series champ at Yankee Stadium. Then there are the for-purchase offerings in the store. Forgoing the traditional racks of Nike, Adidas, and Lulu Lemon workout gear, Jeter’s club has a wall full of fuel—protein shakes, vitamins, Muscle Milk, that sort of thing. (His other clubs have juice bars.) But what really stands out? The club was clearly designed by a dude. The red, gray, and black color scheme along with the black button-tufted faux-leather ottomans in the lobby and graphite-hued bathroom tiles in the locker room scream two words: bachelor gym.
In fact, there was the bachelor himself, hanging out near the multicolored fitness balls.
“Health and fitness is a big part of being a ball player—or it should be,” Jeter said as we sat down to discuss why he decided to partner with the chain. “The thing about 24 Hour Fitness is that it seemed like a great fit for everybody.”
“For us [Major League Baseball players], we pretty much have nighttime jobs,” he continued. “Our job is over at 10: 30, 11 o’clock at night. It’s really great to have that 24-hour opportunity in case you want to work out late. You’d be surprised how many people do.”
Is he one of them?
“I’ve worked out at the gyms,” he said. “It’s a little difficult during the season because we’re here half the year and on the road half the year.” The Yankees’s training facility, however, is outfitted with 24 Hour Fitness equipment.
But while Jeter might have helped design the overall look and feel of his 24 Hour Fitness locations, his co-branded outposts, complete with typical cardio machines, free weights, and group fitness classes, are pretty much like the other gym chains in the city—a little less meathead-y than Crunch; a bit more deluxe than New York Sports Club; and not quite as swanky as Equinox.
“Are you ready to change your membership yet?” he asked me.
I told him I might consider it if he would teach yoga classes.
“Well, I do teach cycling classes in the off-season,” he said.
I shot him a quizzical look. He didn’t look like he was kidding. I shot his multiple handlers quizzical looks. They didn’t seem to think he was kidding.
“For real, you really do?” I asked.
“I’m joking,” he laughed.
Too bad. That really would have gotten gym-goers heart rates racing.
About 24 Hour Fitness
Headquartered in San Ramon, Calif., 24 Hour Fitness Worldwide, an innovative leader in the health and fitness industry, serves more than 3 million members in over 425 clubs worldwide. Founded in 1983 as a one-club operation, 24 Hour Fitness pioneered the concept of making fitness accessible, affordable and a way of life for everyone. The company demonstrates its leadership through sponsorships like that of the U.S. Olympic Team and a commitment to the community through various charitable and in-kind donations. In addition, 24 Hour Fitness enjoys strategic partnerships with major consumer brands like Coca-Cola Dial and Everlast, and for the past eight seasons has partnered with the popular NBC reality TV show, The Biggest Loser. Please call 1-800-224-0240 or visit www.24HourFitness.com for more information and to find the location nearest you.
About Derek Jeter
Derek Jeter, Yankees’ shortstop and captain, took baseball by storm in 1996 winning the American League Rookie of the Year Award. In 2000, he became the only player to win both the All-Star Game MVP Award and the World Series MVP Award in the same year. In addition to leading his team to four world titles, Derek has amassed numerous awards and accolades in his fourteen years in the league and has become one of the most respected and marketable players in the sport. In September 2009, Derek broke Lou Gehrig’s record and became the Yankees all-time hits leader.
Derek’s belief in continued improvement - not only in himself, but others – is evident in his professional accomplishments. In 1996, he created the Turn 2 Foundation to promote academic achievement and leadership development by providing activities and programs designed to motivate youth to “turn to” a healthy lifestyle and turn away from drugs and alcohol. By partnering with 24 Hour Fitness, Derek hopes to improve lives by helping to make fitness a way of life for everyone.