Pandemic conjures up launch of hybrid health studio in Plymouth, MN


When COVID-19 gyms closed, a Minnesota fitness trainer kept moving and inspiring others online to do the same.

PLYMOUTH, Minnesota – A year ago, Minnesota gyms were closed due to the time of year pandemic.

When the gyms closed on March 17, 2020, Monica Moreland offered a free workout on a Facebook group.

“It took off quickly, and within a few months we had thousands of members doing these workouts,” recalled Moreland.

Moreland had been taken off from her job as a gym manager at Life Time Fitness. But she was busy offering free virtual workouts twice a day and six times a week.

“We just made a strong community with each other because we all agreed that we were doing these workouts together and we were really only helping people stay healthy all that time,” said Moreland.

Without asking her, donations came in from those who took her free courses. It allowed her to run her own business and start Movement Studio. Moreland held her first courses in the Plymouth area in November.

“It wasn’t that scary for risk … because I knew we had the support and that they would stay with us,” said Moreland.

According to Moreland, Movement Studio has about 900 members. The majority of the members are native, but they also have members across the United States and as far as Australia.

“I like the flexibility to be simple and to be honest, I have three children at home doing distance education so I can exercise and help them with their meetings. Get off if I have to,” said Jessi Soles of St. Louis Park.

Soles said her three girls will join in at times.

“You see how I train and set goals and destroy those goals,” said Soles.

Movement Studio is a hybrid gym that combines virtual and personal classes. On Wednesday morning, six members attended in person while the rest joined through Zoom. The zoom class image is also projected onto one of the walls of the studio.

“I think even though we’re kind of far apart when you see other people on screen, that energy connection is real,” said Soles.

Movement Studio workouts are streamed live as needed or can be done in person.

“It’s a strong community of people who the moment you join us, virtually or in person, they feel like part of the group and everyone is on your side and just wants you to do your best,” Moreland said.

It costs $ 32 per month for a virtual membership or $ 49 per month for a studio and virtual membership. You can also try out individual classes here. Movement Studio also offers free workouts that you can try here.

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