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Balanced Body COREterly

Summer 2017

Club Scene

MOTR® and Midtown Athletic Clubs
MOTR’s a key player in the company’s drive to build the best club in North America

by Dan Wilson

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in the 2017 Balanced Body catalog.

Midtown began as a single tennis club in Chicago in 1970 and has since grown to comprise 8 high-end facilities: four in the Chicago area and four others in Atlanta, Montreal, Rochester NY, and Weston FL. Recently the original club in Chicago has been undergoing a refurbishing. The goal, according to Richard Earney, Midtown’s National Program Director, is to create one of the greatest clubs in North America, with state-of-the-art facilities and captivating programing.

Part of that captivating programming? MOTR from Balanced Body. MOTR (MOre Than a Roller) combines the comfort of a foam roller with the challenge of three weight level resistances, giving clubs a challenging and diverse workout tool. Exercise categories include cardio, balance, functional training, mind-body, agility, strength training and more - all in an economic 43" cylinder. In addition, many Reformer exercises can be simulated on MOTR.

“Our National Fitness Director discovered it a trade show and relayed to the clubs that it could be a part of where we wanted to go from a programming standpoint,” says Hayley Hollander, Fitness Director for the Chicago location. “We launched our program in August of 2015 and the other locations have since followed suit. We feature MOTR in small group training with a capacity of 8 people per class. The other locations feature MOTR in private and semi-private sessions.”

Unique and portable…
“MOTR is a great fit for the Midway clubs because it was a way to expand our Pilates service offerings outside the studio space we currently had”, says Amanda Houde, the Pilates Director for Midtown. “It gave our members a chance to experience Pilates-based movement in a unique way that many had yet to see. Midtown is known as tennis club, and our member base is interested in improving their game. The MOTR allows one to train for balance, stability, core, speed, and quickness through foot work.”

Hayley agrees: “We want to get our members in front of our Pilates coaches and allow more of our members to see our Pilates and mind-body offerings and how they can enhance their goals, while at the same time driving usage with a portable tool. Seriously, you can literally do the class anywhere!”

Midtown promoted the MOTR program to members through their social media channels, member emails, signage both inside and outside of the club, digital marketing and instructor referrals. Currently the Chicago MOTR classes are complimentary to members, as a value-add program for their membership. However, members must enroll in 5 week sessions to reserve their spot.

Terrific response from members…
So how has member response been?

“Our members love it and it’s been growing rapidly, says Amanda. “It’s a unique way for them to work on everything they are hoping to achieve with their exercise goals, while feeling like they get a great workout. The moves are challenging, but the tool is simple and easy to use.”

Midtown also sees MOTR’s role expanding in the future. “We see the MOTR as something we can embed into a Pilates or mind-body Bootcamp - combining it with Barre and mat,” says Hayley. “We’re also going to look at using it as a supplement to our Studio Reformer classes as a prop to add into the sessions. MOTR just gives us so many possibilities.“

To learn more about Midtown Athletic Clubs visit