By Phebe Wahl By Phebe Wahl | April 18, 2022 | Lifestyle
Digital fitness platform obé Fitness is here to spark joy, offering something we need even more than mere pushups and planks.
Mark Mullett and Ashley Mills, obé Fitness co-founders and co-CEOs
“As humans, we crave positive, entertaining experiences that keep us motivated and coming back for more, and that’s what obé was designed to deliver,” says obé Fitness co-founder and co-CEO Ashley Mills. “Our goal is to help people fall in love with the joy of movement, achieve lasting results and provide a holistic journey that satiates, encourages and engages every step of the way,” says co-founder and co-CEO Mark Mullett. Mullett shares that the platform offers an “enterTRAINment network” that aims to bring entertainment, pop culture and a sense of style to fitness. The classes offered in over 20 modalities are filmed at the brand’s custom lightbox in Brooklyn—an illuminated space inspired by light artists James Turrell and Dan Flavin. Classes (beloved by the likes of SZA, Kate Hudson and Drew Barrymore) range from a Met Gala HIIT or Gossip Girl-themed burn to a West Side Story Broadway-esque dance-off that are so fun you hardly notice all the pushups and planks. “Transformation through the lens of a fitness journey doesn’t just mean what you see in the mirror; it’s who you see in the mirror,” says Mullett. “We are creating a world where people actually want to work out,” says Mills. Here, the fitness founders share what gets them pumped.
What first sparked your interest in your industry?
MM: I grew up in the ’80s watching my mom sweat it out to Richard Simmons in our living room. Flash-forward 20 years, I found myself working as a talent agent representing A-list talent, TV networks and streaming platforms—and in the NYC boutique fitness scene where I was taking a class a day for $40 each. My co-founder and I wanted the world to experience the rock star talent, innovative modalities and encouraging support of a like-minded community on a daily basis at a fraction of the price, zero commute and no Park Avenue zip code required.
AM: As a busy new mom, it was always challenging to make it to the fitness classes I loved. Uninspired by the digital fitness options on the market—and given my background in and love of entertainment—I knew it could be better. Both the entertainment industry and the fitness industry help people feel and learn. That’s what we do every day at obé—it’s about moving and being moved.
How do you think your innovation fills a void or need in the community?
MM: We have something for everyone—no pricey equipment required. Whether you are just beginning your fitness journey or have completed your third marathon, we have strength, conditioning, yoga and meditative programming for every body, at any level—supported by a community that has your back every step of the way. Oh, and we finally made it fun to work out.
AM: Very few digital products make people feel better, both physically and mentally, and connect to themselves and others. That’s what we do all day, every day. Obé fills a void that we saw in the industry: a platform that not only delivers results and challenging classes but also entertains and inspires. It’s not about PRs or stats at obé; it’s about finding the joy in movement.
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What change do you hope to drive in the future through your work?
MM: We’re in the best life business. If we can help you break a sweat, build muscles and ultimately take on the day with a renewed sense of purpose, we’re doing our job. Bonus points if one of our instructors has you laughing so hard you fall out of your plank.
What other projects or news can we buzz for the year ahead?
MM: We’ve never been just about the pushups and the planks. A well-rounded fitness lifestyle requires the ancillary wellness content that supports our members’ journey. In addition to new class types and celebrity guests, stay tuned for new content verticals, deeper in-app personalization and community engagement, more IRL experiences and exclusive retail drops. From partnerships with Samsung to Bloomingdale’s to Athleta to Disney, we are always looking for ways to provide ‘only at obé’ moments.
AM: We’re looking forward to making big moves in 2022! We recently launched a slate of brand-new, progressive training programs that can be done at the gym or at home, empowering our members to get real, noticeable results. Also, look out for new features that connect members with the obé community and help them stay accountable, as well as new types of content that goes beyond live and on-demand classes that will keep members engaged, entertained and inspired.
Photography by: PHOTO COURTESY OF OBÉ FITNESS