Indoor cycling your way to fitness on Martha’s Vineyard

Indoor cycling in action at Om of Motion in West Tisbury. — Photo by Susan Safford

If you are wondering if you will fit into last year’s swimsuit, if you have a closet of perfectly good clothes that don’t quite fit anymore, if it is becoming a little too difficult to tie your shoes, if you are concerned about your overall health, or would like to continue your present food intake without all the side effects, you might want to consider climbing on an indoor cycle.

The New Year is often a time for reevaluating goals and ambitions. If getting into better physical shape is one of your goals, you may want to consider riding an exercise bike. Our legs are 20 to 40 percent of our body mass and can be as much as 50 percent of our muscle mass. Giving our legs a good workout is a way to exercise a large part of our body while strengthening the cardiovascular system, according to Brenda Wallis, fitness director at the Mansion House Health Club in Vineyard Haven.

Riding a stationary bicycle is a great way to get a workout while burning calories and keeping your muscles in shape, particularly in the winter when riding a bicycle outside is often a less desirable alternative. Cycling is a non-impact, non-body twisting, non-weight lifting way to improve your health. Phyllis Kugler, a certified Spinning® instructor at The Workout at the airport said, “Cycling is a great way to burn a lot of calories. It’s good for bad knees and it can bring your cardiovascular numbers down.” The term “spinning,” while often used generically, is a registered trademark of Mad Dogg Athletics.

Cycling classes can help focus those workouts. Ms. Kugler said, “It can be hard for people to get an aggressive workout on a bicycle. Sometimes they don’t know how to do it. A class can help people be more aggressive than they might be on their own.” She noted that almost all classes allow participants to ride at a speed comfortable for them.

There are many cycling options on Martha’s Vineyard. All the indoor cycling facilities mentioned here have year round programs for beginners through advanced. Many include short exercise sessions off the bike. Take your pick.

Om of Motion

Om of Motion, located at 505 State Road in West Tisbury, is the Island’s only dedicated indoor cycling studio. It has a full range of cycling-based programs for people of all levels. “Cycling can be and is for everyone, whether you are rehabbing an injured knee, wanting to improve your overall health, or just want to move for the positive effects,” said owner Kimberly Cartwright.

As a new option this winter, Om of Motion, co-sponsored by Edgartown Bicycle, is teaming up with coaching experts from Cycling Fusion, an indoor cycling studio in Pittsburgh, to offer Island cyclists and fitness enthusiasts a national caliber winter training program. Using a live internet feed, the training begins the week of January 5 and lasts for 12 weeks. It includes 12 sessions, each two to three hours, with a science of training segment, a one- to two-hour on-bike session, and a cross training yoga/Pilates for cyclists segment. The program focuses on heart rate maintenance and is designed to accommodate skilled bicycle racers as well as people who have never been on a bike.

There are several broadcast times per week and on weekends, all of them with expert coaches available through live chat. People joining the class can receive a $100 donation from the sponsors to any charity ride they participate in. The cost of the special Cycling Fusion winter program is $540.

Access to a digital library of cycling training classes and virtual rides and to unlimited classes at Om of Motion come with the training. Groups are encouraged to set up their own training schedules.

The drop in fee for regular classes is $12. There are discounts for multiple class cards. One month of unlimited classes costs $79, for three months $199. They offer up to 15 classes per week and keyless entry, so the bikes can be used at any time. For more information, visit, or call/text Kimberly Cartwright at 508-560-2628, or email

Mansion House HeaIth Club

The Mansion House HeaIth Club on Main Street in Vineyard Haven, offers indoor cycling classes with certified instructors. Each instructor brings his or her own unique personality to the ride, according to Brenda Wallis, a certified Spinning® instructor. The classes are one hour and include a 45-minute ride with a 15-minute segment of deep stretching and core strengthening movements.

SPIN CYCLE is held on Monday at 8:30 am and Wednesday and Friday at 6:30 am, BIKE is on Tuesday and Thursday at 4:30 pm. The classes are adapted to all different levels and abilities, from the serious rider looking for an intense workout during the off-season to the beginner just starting a fitness program. Ms. Wallis said each class has a mix of women and men ranging in age from early 20s through 70s. Riders work as hard or easy as they choose. All classes are included in the club’s membership fee. The non-member winter walk-in rate is $12 and includes all health club features, including the pool.

For more information, call 508-693-2200 or visit

The Workout

The Workout and Vineyard Tennis Center at the airport has a variety of cycles along with other exercise equipment. They offer a class for first timers on Wednesdays at 6:30 pm, and classes on Saturday mornings and Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Classes are free with a health club membership, or with a $20 day pass, which also allows use of all the equipment at the club.

For more information, visit or call 508-696-8000.

Blitz Fitness

Catie Fuller at Blitz Fitness, in The Split Rock Athletic Center located on State Road in West Tisbury, is a certified Spinning® instructor and has taught on Island for 15 years. She emphasizes intense interval training to build endurance and strength, but says that she welcomes beginners to any of her classes. She has 16 cycles and runs classes Saturdays and Sundays and three days during the week. Classes are $15 each. Punch card purchases can bring the price down to $10 per class. A monthly membership fee of $79 covers all classes including her martial arts based exercise classes. For more information, call her at 508-776-7032 or visit

YMCA of M.V.

The YMCA, on the Vineyard Haven-Edgartown Road in Oak Bluffs, offers three types of cycling classes. The regular classes for people of all ages and abilities, a Cycle Blast, class for more advanced riders and a Cycling Core class that includes core exercises.

Sign-up for each class opens 30 minutes before each class begins. The classes are free with a Y membership or can be taken with a $20 day pass, which includes use of all Y facilities.

For more information visit or call 508-696-7171.