Dec. 18 2013 12:00 AM

The Institution/FLEXcity

A new fitness studio opened last week in downtown Lansing, just in time to help folks looking to fight their urge to load up on carbs and hibernate. The Institution, a group exercise and training studio, held its grand opening at 216 S. Washington Square. Co-owner Paul Nagel, a certified personal trainer who retired from the army in 2009 after 20 years of service, opened the 1,000-squarefoot business intown with his partner, Jennifer Battle.

“I’ve trained thousands of solider in physical fitness — it’s what I’m best at,” Nagel said. “Fitness is our passion. We want to help change lives.” Services include personal training, nutritional guidance and group training in several well-known exercise systems, including Zumba, Insanity, Body and R.I.P.P.E.D. Group membership rates run $55 per month, with personal training classes costing $35 per half hour and $55 per hour. There is also a free Saturday fitness program at the studio on for kids ages 6- 12 from 11 a.m.-noon. Additionally, Nagel said he’s reached out to the Lansing School District and will provide physical education three days a week at 18 elementary schools.

“It’s hard to grasp our kids aren’t going to outlive us because of their sedentary lifestyles,” Nagel said. “Fighting childhood obesity is very important to us.”

The gym was formerly a location for FLEXcity, which moved two blocks up the street to 119 N. Washington Square, above the Downtown YMCA Fitness Center. FLEXcity opened in January 2012 and was able to more than double in size to 2,200 square feet when it moved in August. Co-owner Jenny Quinn said she and her partner also intend to open a second location Grand Rapids next month.

“We’ve got over 300 clients now, and we offer a variety of fitness classes to fit many different types of lifestyles and fitness goals,” Quinn said. Classes range in price from $15 for a single drop-in class to $125 for unlimited monthly access, with the first class free. The studio developed a signature workout called FLEX56, an hour-long class with strength, endurance and flexibility conditioning.

The Institution 216 S. Washington, Suite.C, Lansing Hours vary by class schedules (517) 512-1554

FLEXcity 119 N. Washington Square, Ste. 300A, Lansing Hours vary by class schedules (517) 580-4848