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WE’RE OPEN: Local gym creates online platform, rents equipment to stay in business during closure

Posted: 6:36 PM, Mar 24, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-24 21:22:35-04

SALT LAKE CITY – A local gym is finding creative ways to stay in business amid coronavirus related closures, providing clients with a new service and equipment.

Like many streets in Salt Lake City, the area around 200 South and 300 West is quiet.

On a normal day, it’s hard to find parking as residents rush to a local boutique fitness studio called Rebel House.

“On an average day, 180 people go through those doors,” said Rebel House owner Devin Pearson.

Like dozens of other small businesses in the area, concerns of coronavirus prompted them to shut their doors.

“For the most part we’ve gone from what we were making to ultimately zero overnight,” Pearson said. “When we do open up again we’re basically opening up as almost a startup, it’s going to be like starting fresh again because now you basically have to rebuild that from the ground up.”

Faced with a sudden loss of business and in turn, income – Devin applied for loans and did what he could to ensure they could stay in business until gyms were allowed to start operating again. But, not knowing how long it could be before cash started to come in again, they decided to take matters into their own hands.

“We worked as quickly as we could, we created an online platform that we put on our website and on-demand, and we started creating footage the next day,” he said.

In a matter of days, Rebel House On Demand was born.

“We’re just literally trying to make it so it feels like what Rebel House would usually feel like on a day-to-day basis,” said Devin.

The new platform features virtual classes and provides clients with the same instructed classes they would receive in-studio including, boxing, HIIT, yoga and cycling. In a matter of days people have logged hundreds of hours of classes.

“We have 57 bikes, so we just went and took all of our bikes and we rented them out to our clients so they could have them at home and now we’re doing footage for people at home,” Devin said. “We’ve been going a hundred miles a minute just to make sure we’re here at the end of this.”

The decision to rent out the very expensive stationary bikes, didn’t come lightly.

“It’s tricky, it’s hard, we had to basically put our trust in people in maintaining them, making sure they’re taken care of and all this stuff, it’s like giving your children away in a sense,” Devin laughed.

Bottom line, business is still taking a hit -- but, it’s those bike rentals, and their quick action in creating an online platform, keeping them in business.

“It’s always been the same mission, even today it’s the same mission, make sure that people feel that they are taken care of and important and they can get through hard things,” said Devin. “It’s not about the bag, the bike or the mat, it’s the experience we give to our clients.”

Rebel House intends to continue adding to their new online platform after they are allowed to reopen. It can be found HERE.