Healthy Pursuits

Interview by Caitlin de Laure
Photography by Jovian Lim

The pursuit of physical fitness is by nature a constant and unending aspect of our lives. Consequently, numerous sports and facilities have sprouted and evolved to cater to the changing lifestyles of people today. In March 2015, Anthem was launched by Clement, Llewellyn and Shiwei in response to the wave of indoor cycling that has swept through the West and some parts of Asia. A singular, emphatic song made up of different voices, an anthem came to represent what this boutique studio stands for: through a clever mix of music, motivation and camaraderie, fitness would no longer be seen as a chore or something that is devoid of personality, but a culture that is welcoming and contagious.

Co-founder and instructor, Clement, shares more on the people-centric mission of Anthem and how every facet of the studio is orchestrated, not just to improve physiques, but to bring people together through sport, design, and music.

Please introduce yourself to our readers.

My name is Clement and I’m from Anthem Indoor Cycling. I started it with two other partners, Llewellyn and Shiwei, and we’ve been running this since March last year.

What drives your passion for sport—indoor cycling in particular?

Since my schooldays, I have always been fairly involved in sports and I thought it was a great way to bring people together because of my experience with team sports.

As for indoor cycling, it started out as a huge movement primarily in the West, before it jumped to this side of the world—first Australia, then Hong Kong. Sometime in 2014, we figured that it would be a great time to launch this in Singapore as well. We decided on spinning because it’s a good total body workout with great cardiovascular benefits. It is very low-impact, which means it’s great for people with sports injuries or people who may find running, especially long distances, taxing on their joints, knees and ankles.

Could you tell us about the concept of Anthem and how it came about?

I think every sports establishment or fitness studio focuses on a workout. Well, we wanted to go one step further: instead of being a place where you only go to get fit, we also want it to be a place where you make friends. For instance, you know the instructors there, you know the receptionist, you know the other riders, and you sort of build your own community. We envisioned it to be a place where people could go and chill out after work, have a workout and then continue chilling out. And, I think that’s why we chose to work with Hjgher, who know a lot about space and interior design and could help us achieve that ambition.

The name Anthem came about because we focus a lot on the music in the workout as well—it’s not just going in and sweating your ass off to the same track over and over again. Every instructor comes in with their own playlist, so they each come with a different sound that’s an extension of their personalities; we want people to get hooked on that. During the day, you’ve got your bankers, lawyers, marketing managers, and so on, but when they come into the class, they all represent the same thing: everybody comes here to get a great workout and feel good about themselves after that. On our part, we try to unite them with songs, hence the name Anthem.

Read more in The U Press N˚11 (Singapore edition).