Old City FItness, July 2023, Nicole Hatmaker, manager
I sat down with Old City Athletic Club Manager Nicole Hatmaker recently to talk about the expansion of the first privately owned full gym in the city and the impact the gym and its growth have had on membership. Opening in 2018, they provide memberships, group classes, and personal training for the community. While they have experienced great success with one cardio/weight machine space and a group fitness room, Nicole tells me she always looked for ways to rearrange the equipment to give members more space to work out and not feel cramped.
The solution came in the form of a knocked-out entry and refinishing a room to increase the square footage by 1,500 sqft, giving them a total of 4,500 sqft open to members. The expansion allowed them to double their equipment to provide more opportunities for members to come during peak hours without worrying whether the machine they want will be open and to add new members and new equipment. The renovations were completed in late Spring.
The entry to the new area was previously a wall opening in the brick that was sealed by cinder blocks and covered by a more attractive wood feature. They still plan to add some accents around the opening to improve the façade there. They moved the machine weight equipment and any equipment that needed movement on the floors into the newly renovated space with rubber flooring and turf. The turf allows for various exercises requiring more action and the ability to slide equipment. The cardio equipment and some weight machines remain in the main room(on pads) on the original hardwood flooring to minimize damage to the over 100-year-old wood. The group fitness room, where they offer Pilates and XGT classes, did not require any changes.
The location of the athletic club filled a need in the Old City for cutting-edge equipment, training, and education that was not previously available nearby. I spoke with gym member Doug, who lives in The Daniel. He emphasized that the location was one of the foremost things that attracted him. He also appreciates the personal relationships he gets to have with the staff and that they take feedback from members seriously, implementing changes or adding equipment to stay on top of the ever-changing technology in fitness. He described it as a “beautiful place to get in shape.” With the beautifully restored hardwood flooring and tin ceiling, I agree. It is beautiful.
The gym is open 24/7 to members via a key fob. Those who purchase group classes only do not need a key fob. The business provides private showers and lockers for members’ use and hope to add a sauna eventually. Nicole had a vision for what she hoped the expansion would provide, and it has exceeded those hopes. Membership has doubled, and their community has expanded.
Membership plans start at $69/month, and classes begin at $130/month for 9 classes or $200/month for unlimited classes. Follow them on Facebook or Instagram. You can reach them at 865-312-5710 and check them out at their website.