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The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

Plank Hamilton Introduces New Fitness Opportunities to the Village of Hamilton

Payton Gore

The Village of Hamilton’s new fitness studio, Plank Hamilton, launched in January 2024 and aims to foster physical and inner strength as well as a welcoming community. The studio, located at 44 Milford St., offers an array of workout classes, including heated yoga, pilates, barre and high-intensity interval training (HIIT). 

Owner Gwenn Werner is a resident of Hamilton, N.Y., and a self-described “serial entrepreneur.” Werner and her husband currently own the hardware store Parry’s and the boutique lodging estate Ashling Acres. However, Werner’s busy schedule as a mother and business owner led her to feel like she was neglecting her passion for wellness, and she was also dealing with back and sciatica issues.

When her sister opened Plank Katonah in Katonah, N.Y., Werner and her daughter visited for a barre class, which combines aspects of ballet, yoga and pilates. After enjoying both the class and the energy of the studio, Werner sought to replicate the experience closer to her home.

“I immediately searched for similar options in the Hamilton area and did not find anything that offered barre, yoga and pilates classes in time slots that worked with my schedule,” Werner said. “My sister’s studio was immediately successful, so I asked if I could bring her concept to Hamilton. She agreed, and Plank Hamilton was born.”

Plank Hamilton hosts around 21 to 25 classes each week, starting as early as 6 a.m. Their full menu includes four types of yoga classes, three types of barre and pilates classes, HIIT, body sculpting and boot camp, with both small group and private sessions available. Werner already has plans to create more types of classes and group activities for customers to enjoy, like TRX classes, wellness retreats and an informal running group.

“Our talented instructors offer personal training and nutritional counseling. We also have a retail store that sells Lululemon and Manduka sports apparel. I really want clients to feel welcome and supported in our studio while also having fun,” Werner said. “We have a Plank Board, where we have a friendly competition on who can plank the longest. I get really excited to see clients hitting personal fitness goals and, most importantly, feeling positive about themselves. I hope Plank Hamilton will continue to be a positive, wellness community for the Hamilton area.” 

Senior Gabi Cantero has taken a variety of classes at Plank Hamilton this semester.

“I’ve taken hot yoga, pilates and sculpt classes at Plank Hamilton. I really like how much variability there is because I can try new classes every week,” Cantero said. “The studio is small, and there’s usually two to eight people in each class, which I really appreciate because I’ve been to some classes where they pack as many people as possible in the space. The instructors make sure they know your name and are super nice and accommodating.”

Senior Elisabeth Merrifield tried Bikram yoga for the first time at Plank Hamilton and loved the atmosphere of the studio. 

“When I walked into Plank, I felt like I had been transported into a big city, which was so nice because it allowed my hour there to feel like an escape from small, cold Hamilton,” Merrifield said. “The instructor was so sweet, and she shared a bit about the history of Bikram yoga, which was interesting to hear. It was a type of yoga that I’ve never practiced before, so it was fun that they offered it.”

Both Cantero and Merrifield are excited that there is a new fitness option and business in Hamilton. 

“Such a small community and close connection with the town is nice, but sometimes it makes me feel trapped, so I appreciate having places where I can feel a bit more like I’m living in a town and less like I live and breathe Colgate,” Merrifield said. 

“I think Plank is a really good option to have in the [Village] because it changes up my routine in a new place. People from the community also go to the classes, which I find refreshing,” Cantero said. 

Werner hopes that Colgate students explore the studio’s classes.

“We welcome you and want to be a positive influence in your day,” Werner said. “I am always open to ideas to better accommodate students’s schedules and wellness and fitness needs.”

Those interested in attending one of Plank Hamilton’s classes can find more information on their website or download the Plank Hamilton app.

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About the Contributor
Payton Gore, News Editor
Payton Gore is a senior from Baltimore, MD concentrating in marine freshwater science with a minor in sociology. She has previously served as a staff writer for the News section. On campus, Payton is a Senior Admission Intern in the Office of Admission, a Bystander Intervention Facilitator at Shaw Wellness Center, and is involved in the Club Squash Team.

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