Equinox Is Opening an Ultra-Advanced Treadmill Studio in Boston

The Precision Running Lab offers a unique sensory running experience.


Equinox Precision Running Lab/Photo by Chelsea Lauren

Boston is already the best running city in America—and it’s about to get even better.

Equinox is unveiling a Precision Running Lab at its Chestnut Hill branch. The Lab is the luxury chain’s second treadmill studio overall, and the only one on the East Coast. And in a company first, the ultra high-tech space will be open to Equinox members and non-members alike.

David Siik, who created the interval training-based Precision Running class taught in regular Equinox gyms, promises the Lab will offer an experience unlike any group fitness class you’ve ever taken.

For one thing, classes in the Lab don’t use typical Top 40 fitness playlists—in fact, the music doesn’t have lyrics at all. Instead, techno and trance music is perfectly synced to correspond with the workout, down to the exact second.

“We don’t want anyone to ever [ask], ‘Can you guys send us your playlist?’ There’s enough of that,” Siik says. “I’m really happy to let cycling own that, let those great main studio classes own that. The music is very, very precise, just like the content.”

Equally precise is the lighting. Each Precision Running Lab class uses an average of 117 lighting cues, which are also perfectly matched to the workout and the playlist. “It becomes this hyper-connected experience,” Siik explains.

Finally, Equinox uses a sophisticated air filtration system that removes excess nitrogen from the room, and pumps pure oxygen back in to keep runners going harder. “It’s not like Vegas where you’re up gambling all night long,” Siik laughs, “but we raise it just enough that we are honoring what is the healthiest experience for performance running indoors.”

But while the environmental effects may differentiate the facility, Siik, a lifelong runner and former racer himself, insists it’s the content of the class—a science-based, track-inspired run—that puts the workout itself in a league of its own. When he was developing Precision Running, in fact, Siik insisted on first trying it without music or any gimmicks, to ensure the focus remained on running.

“You have to get back to the quality of your workout. It has to be the primary motivation when you get on a treadmill,” he says. “When you become connected to the content of your track practice, you start to perform better. And when you perform better, you do more.”

Equinox’s only other Performance Running Lab is located in Santa Monica, California. The Chestnut Hill Lab is set to open in this fall. In addition to Precision Running, it will offer a circuit training class focused on conditioning for runners.

Bringing the model to Boston was an easy choice, Siik says. Typical Precision Running classes here already sell out, but more importantly, the city has running its blood.

“They know running better than anybody, especially the spirit and the culture of it,” Siik says. “There could not be a better place.”

Precision Running Lab at Equinox, 200 Boylston St., Chestnut Hill, equinox.com.