ClassPass, the startup that offers users a selection of workout classes from various gyms, has apologised for a post it published earlier this month encouraging “single bros” to join the service and use it to hit on women taking classes.
“We’re sorry if our blog post about finding a date was offensive,” ClassPass tweeted. “We’ve edited it & we hope you use ClassPass to find new workouts & friends!”
The blog post in question was written by Brian Levine, a member of the ClassPass customer experience team. Levine described attending a ClassPass class and overcoming anxiety about his “red-in-the-face, wring out your t-shirt, two-towels-needed” sweat tendencies in order to ask a fellow fitness freak out on a date.
But the post’s second paragraph rubbed many people the wrong way. Its contents have since been edited, but it originally read:
“… for you single bros out there, where better to meet a lady than at a fitness class? Between the sweat, endorphins and the potential for less clothing than usual, the stage is set for us guys to make your move.”
The remainder of the post was a personal recounting of his experience with asking the woman out and receiving a response of, “Sure, why not?” It ended with Levine acknowledging that he was glad he’d joined ClassPass because it “allowed me to step out of my comfort zone, both in terms of physical fitness and social interaction,” he wrote.
Twitter users who stumbled on the post felt either perplexed or offended.
Well, except one or two…
Shortly after we contacted ClassPass for comment on the post, the apologetic tweet was sent out and the offending paragraph removed mention of skimpy clothes and single bros. It was switched to this:
“… if you’re single, it’s an opportunity to meet other singles who might be in your class. I decided to go for it in a class I took recently — here’s what happened[.]:”
In addition to their tweeted apology, a spokesperson from ClassPass clarified with us that the point of the blog post was for one member to share their story. It was not part of an effort to encourage men to join so they could hit on the women, she said.
ClassPass issued the following statement:
“At ClassPass we’ve built a like-minded community of people that enjoy getting fit and discovering new and exciting ways to work out. Often, members in our community have established friendships with other members and in some rare cases, romantic relationships. The blog post was not part of a concerted marketing effort, it was merely a personal story from one of our team members about his experience. We are sorry that it came off as insensitive and want to reiterate how important it is for us that all of our members feel comfortable and at ease in our classes.”