New Coworking Spin: Work Out While You Work
You could join a gym, you could join a coworking space, or you could join The Wilderness, a new locally owned business in Uptown that integrates fitness and office—with gymnastics rings just an arm’s length away from desks.
“We want to take away all the barriers that are keeping people from having a healthier workday by just being in a healthier environment,” said Ben Wales, who met his co-founder Bobby Burns while training for the competition show American Ninja Warrior. The two decided to channel their passion for fitness toward the traditional workspace, where they say health and wellness are often put on the back burner.
“People typically make their worst health decisions when they’re working,” said Wales. “With The Wilderness, all the easiest choices are generally your healthiest.”
At The Wilderness, you can rock climb between Zoom calls. Fitness equipment is set up in the center of the open space, flanked by desks. There’s an obstacle course, a bouldering wall and cardio machines as well as a yoga studio. The Wilderness offers group fitness classes, including yoga flow and high intensity interval training.
The goal, Wales said, is to eliminate the intimidation factor. “For every piece of equipment I picked out, I would think, can my mom get value from this equipment? And if the answer was no, I didn’t want it in this space.”
Wales said he and his partner hopes the unique space will relieve some of the limitations of a traditional office environment while sparking creativity.
Into the Wilderness
Located in a 17,000 square feet space that used to be a luxury car garage, The Wilderness offers more than desks and fitness equipment. There’s also a speakeasy, a movie room, a game room, meditation space, a community kitchen, and private event event space.
The Wilderness pays homage to its name with abundant greenery and wooden park benches. There are plans to add an oak tree in the central area. There are also typical coworking elements like telephone booths for private phone or video calls.
Intent on catering to different types of users, The Wilderness offers four different membership options. The gym-only pass runs $99 per month, which includes free access to all group fitness classes and gym equipment.
Coworking memberships, which include access to fitness, range in price starting at $199 per month for an open desk; $299 for a dedicated desk; and private offices starting at $799. Event space rentals start at $200 per hour.
The Wilderness marked its grand opening on Saturday, and the founders are focused on connecting with businesses and remote workers in their Minneapolis neighborhood.
“There’s a big movement to help reinvigorate the Uptown area and especially Lake Street, we’re excited to be working with a lot of the other businesses and people within the community,” said Wales. “And then, as much as we can, provide a healthy space for our community members and also offer a great event space that a lot of other local individuals and businesses can take advantage of. I think that’s the way that we can offer the most value to the community.”
More: visit our guide to Twin Cities coworking spaces