Of Cheetah Gym’s three clubs, the Wicker Park/Bucktown location opened in 2003. It resides in a building that was previously a lavish apartment that played home to MTV’s The Real World cast, which filmed in the Windy City in 2002.
In a neighborhood that is saturated with fitness options, Cheetah Gym strives to stand out. “There are a lot of different options for fitness, especially in this location,” said Todd Beisch, the club manager. “So we focus on things that we have compared to other people and what we do better than others.”
Those who select Cheetah Gym as their neighborhood gym of choice have access to a wide variety of unique programming options. From yoga and Pilates to cycling and boot camp, members will always have something challenging and fun to do.
“Our group schedule also features classes that might be an extra cost at another gym such as a kettlebell boot camp class,” explained Beisch. “Gyms usually charge an extra fee for these classes because you need a certified kettlebell instructor, but one of our personal trainers is a certified kettlebell instructor. We have also had instructors who have come up with their own formats. And all classes are included in the membership.”
Another unique feature of Cheetah Gym is that it operates a CrossFit Box. In 2010 it received its official CrossFit affiliation license agreement and opened the Box in the front section of the gym.
“It has really been exciting to watch [our] CrossFit expand over the years,” said Beisch. “When we first started off it was just the nuts and bolts. We only had basic equipment, but now we have gone through about three or four renovations and keep upgrading and making the facility look nicer in the CrossFit section.”
Cheetah Gym continues to separate itself from other fitness facilities in the neighborhood by making exceptional, personalized service a priority. While many gyms may be replacing front desk staff with an automated system where members can scan in, Beisch maintains that the front desk staff is one of the club’s most important features.
“We really focus on adding a personal touch,” explained Beisch. “When a member comes through the door and they have had a crummy day, someone greeting and having a conversation with them helps. I am not a person who is always great with names, but I challenge my front desk staff to at least get to know one member’s name each week.”
By striving to constantly fulfill its mission to exceed member expectations, Cheetah Gym continues to make its mark on the Wicker Park/Bucktown neighborhood.
By Emily Harbourne