Fitbit ends free monthly fitness classes in Denver, other cities

Fitbit Local, a free monthly fitness class, launched in Denver in August 2016 and ended on Feb. 21. (Photos courtesy Angie Sanchez Olaciregui)

Fitbit Local is no longer in the Mile High City.

The free monthly fitness classes, which launched in Denver in August 2016, ended without advance notice on Feb. 21, according to two Denver-area instructors.

“It totally blindsided us. We had no idea that it was coming,” said Samy Mattei, program instructor.

Samy Mattei and Jon Cerf

Mattei, an instructor at The River Yoga, and Jon Cerf, founder of Core Progression, were local ambassadors and trainers for the program.

Fitbit, an electronics company known for its fitness trackers, began offering free classes to the public in 2015, and expanded to Denver the next year. The program also was offered in San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, Seattle, New York City, Miami, Chicago, Minneapolis and Washington, D.C.

In a Facebook post, Fitbit confirmed the program had ended, but provided no reasons for the decision. The company didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Cerf said the Denver classes had between 60 and 120 participants each month. The trainers were paid for their time and given a monthly budget to find a venue, sponsors and anything else needed for the class.

“With Fitbit paying us and making it free, people that couldn’t have a trainer or go to a class could have that experience,” he said.

The Denver classes had between 60 and 120 participants each month.

The type of classes varied by city. During the one-hour classes in Denver, guests typically would split them into 30 minutes of exercises and 30 minutes of yoga. Sometimes the class would be treated as a field day or as a run or walk around Wash Park or Red Rocks, Mattei said.

“It was a really cool experience seeing people try something new … and keep coming back,” she said. “One of the things that was really cool was knowing people on a first-name basis. … The communal aspect was really unique.”

Cerf said he’s not sure what will happen next but said a March event, without Fitbit, will take place. He and Mattei will host an event similar to Fitbit Local at Mile High Spirits in Five Points on March 15. Participants will be charged $10.

“We’re hoping to try and gauge at this next event how many people want to be a part of this community or event,” Mattei said. “ … We’re hopeful and we’re going to keep the energy still thriving.”

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