NYC: Drill Body HIIT Class at Drill Fitness

Drill Fitness NYC


Crash Course: The Drill Body HIIT class at Drill Fitness is a fierce combination of two sweat inducing all-stars: HIIT and tabata. The 50-minute class fuses strength, cardio, and plyometric movement to create a total body conditioning workout that will run even the fittest athlete through their paces. Don’t believe me? Check the scoreboard. Each participant is hooked up to a heart-rate monitor that delivers real-time information about effort and overall burn. This one isn’t for the faint of heart. Expect to be challenged! For a full list of class times, check out the Drill Fitness website.

[line] [left]where: 136 Church Street | Tribeca

bring: water, grit

perks: fully stocked showers, smoothie bar, heart-rate monitors

sweat score: 9 out of 10

[/left][right]wear: whatever you like

instructor: Robert Ramsey

cost: drop-in $32[/right][line]

I’ve crashed a lot of gyms in my day. Suffice it to say, it takes something truly new and different to really get me jazzed. Sure there are a lot of fun new fitness concepts out there. Great workouts but not so great studio spaces. Beautiful studios but meh workouts. It’s rare to find a place that has a solid showing in both categories. But friends, I’m adding a new find  to that small and illustrious list: Drill Fitness in Tribeca.

Drill Fitness NYCDrill currently offers both spinning and HIIT classes. Initially, I rolled my eyes at the spinning bit. It feels like a lot of studios tack on spin as a shiny and trendy option to get new students through the door. Look, spin bikes! Come play! But when speaking to Drill’s founder, he explained that, as a triathlete, he wanted the gym to be a place where students could build a total-body fitness program out of complimentary options. A wildly challenging HIIT class and a cardio-crazy bike ride – add them together throughout the week and it’s impossible not to see results.

The Studio

Walk through the front door at Drill and you’re immediately surrounded by gleaming white walls, pops of red and black, fresh flowers, and smiling front desk staff. The gym is brand-spanking-new so everything and every one was in exceptional form. After signing in, I was given my personal heart-rate monitor and went downstairs to stash my bag in the locker area. 

Drill Fitness NYC

This section is co-ed, but just past it are the locker rooms. Spoiler alert: the ladies locker room is gorgeous. I’m talking spacious, clean, bright, and fully-stocked with anything and everything you might need to clean up after class. Blowdryers, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, deodorant, fresh towels, teak bathmats – the works.

Drill Fitness NYCI’ve never seen a studio with their own brand of locker room products, have you? This is a first! And fresh flowers will win me over any day of the week. They add a certain touch of drama and class, particularly in these shades of deep purple and burgundy. Swoon.

Drill Fitness NYC


I didn’t get a look at the spin room – so this studio tour is incomplete. But that just means I’ll have to come back next time for a bike extravaganza, which is a-okay by me.

The Class

Drill Fitness NYC

I walked into the HIIT studio and was immediately confronted with sensory overload – in a good way. A brightly colored screen loomed over the room, flashing stats from our individual heart-rate monitors throughout class. Red. Green. Orange. Yellow. A glittery disco ball partied on the ceiling. The surround-sound sound system was bumping. And our instructor Robert was ricocheting off the walls with energy. Everything was buzzing.

Drill Fitness NYC

Robert gathered the class together and went over the morning workout in full. He then  walked us through the first set of warm-up exercises. Read it and weep.

Drill Fitness NYCYou can see that after the warmup, things get wild pretty quickly. The remainder of class goes back and forth between periods of HIIT drills and tabata. Each segment is different, and the exercises change from class to class. So you may do kettlebell swings in one class and sandbag throws in another. Or both in the same class. You won’t know until you get there – that’s part of the fun.

Drill Fitness NYCRobert took the time to clearly demonstrate each move we would be doing during the different segments. There was a period of instruction between each set, so we didn’t have to memorize any long sequences. This is especially helpful when you’re panting, soaking in sweat, and trying to physically keep it together.

Drill Fitness NYCOne thing is for certain: in a workout this challenging, an instructor’s energy will make or break the class. And holy smokes, Robert brought it. He was doing the moves right along with us, pacing up and down cheering loudly, clapping, and cheering some more.

Drill Fitness NYCJust when you thought you couldn’t possibly do another overhead sandbag lift – he was in your face with an unapologetic “oh yes you can!” The guy broke a sweat within the first five minutes. He put 110% into motivating and teaching the class, and expected the same out of everyone in the room. I was seriously impressed.

Drill Fitness NYCYes, the class was challenging. Yes the exercises were varied, targeted, and effective. But Robert made it fun. Entertaining even. Something I would look forward to signing up for again. Any trainer can throw together a series of moves. Not every one can make you work for it.

Drill Fitness NYCLet’s talk about the moves for a minute. From what I can remember though the sweat and endorphin-fueled haze, the workout incorporated a varied mix of torturous favorites. For example:

  • bear crawls
  • sandbag throws
  • burpees
  • froggers
  • squats
  • overhead press
  • lateral jumps
  • high knees

Drill Fitness NYCLike I said, this class isn’t for the faint of heart. Come ready to work hard. It’s not the out-of-your-mind insanity of Tone House, but it’s a thorough butt kicking. You’ll thank yourself later. No really, wait a few days for the soreness to wear off. Then you can appreciate the fact that you totally rocked it.

Drill Fitness NYCAfter class I gathered my things and ordered one of their signature smoothies to go. I picked the Crazy 8’s: a delicious blend of coconut water, coconut milk, banana, mango, pineapple, coconut oil, and turmeric. While I’ve grown to love many of the various smoothie spots in NYC, having one inside the studio is just that much more convenient. Sweat, shower, smoothie, and go. In case you are in need of something a little more substantial, I recommend checking out the adorable Mulberry & Vine just around the corner.

Drill Fitness NYCSo there you have it, folks. Drill Fitness: the total package. Consider this crasher impressed. Can’t wait to come back for more!

What other studios have the total package?




Meaghan is the creator and editor of The Fit Crasher. A transplant to NYC from Washington, DC, she’s here to give you the skinny on all of her latest sweaty adventures, must-try trends, and fitness discoveries. When not exploring the city in spandex, Meaghan enjoys cooking, bluegrass music, and finding that perfect Instagram filter.


  1. Kayla in the City December 6, 2014 / 11:57 am

    Couldn’t agree more about the studio, I’m already obsessed with their FIT class, now I have to check out HIIT

    • DC Fit Crasher December 9, 2014 / 10:02 am

      Yes and I want to check out their spin class too! We’ll have to go sometime.

  2. Elizabeth December 10, 2014 / 8:32 am

    so cool! i work not too far from Drill and am dying to go! i love your point that just because a studio is beautiful doesn’t nesicilary mean the workout is intense. hearing that i’ll “earn my shower” is all i need to know!

    xo, liz

    • DC Fit Crasher December 11, 2014 / 10:22 am

      I hope you get a chance to check it out! It definitely will make you earn your shower, and it’s a gorgeous shower at that. Win-win!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *