ModelFIT Review


To most people, working out with models sounds only a little less intimidating than walking through your high school naked. But I am a very inquisitive type and ever since reading about Justin Gelband’s new venture I was desperate to try it out when in New York.

So, I put on my Stella McCartney sneaks and my skinniest possible looking trousers and trekked to a nondescript, dimly lit second-floor gym on lower Fifth Avenue, where trainer Justin Gelband is booked with top models on the hour, every hour.

Modelfit Bowery

Justin is known as ‘the butt man’, responsible for the toned derrières of Karlie Kloss, Miranda Kerr and many more A-listers. It seems only fitting, then, that he should open his female-focused studio to train his celebrity clientele but to also help regular girls get ‘ModelFIT’. His signature ModelFIT workouts incorporate a mix of Pilates, Yoga, movement, motion, balance stability, functional training and more. I decided to try the sculpt class which Karlie Kloss swears by – well, if it’s good enough for Karlie…

I admit, I am a massive fan of Karlie Kloss and I did go to ModelFIT with the teensiest hope that she might be there. She wasn’t, damn. But my jaw did drop to the floor when I turned around and saw Khloe Kardashian standing right beside me! She looked incredible (tiny in real life) and was friendly and surprisingly quiet as she joined in the class with all the other regular girls. So yes, my claim to fame is that I’ve done squats beside Khloe Kardashian…

The sculpt class that I tried utilises a series of rubber bands, light weights and sliding disks to work my entire body, sculpting my muscles to create structural stability. The concept is to do the movements slowly but correctly, rather than lots of fast repetitions in the wrong form. And boy did I feel the burn. I felt muscles that I didn’t even know existed! You may think a leg lift is a leg lift, but you haven’t done a ModelFit leg lift, a slow move done on a step for stability with an ankle weight, while fully engaging your core and inner thigh, repeated 15 times. Ouch!

Model Fit Events

So would I give it a thumbs up? YES!


1) The workout was incredible. The burn I felt the next day meant I knew I had toned up in a 45 min session. I can only image what a few of these sessions a week will do to ones body.

2) In typical American style, the co-owner Vanessa Parker could not have been friendlier. She was welcoming, enthusiastic and a real advocate for healthy living.

3) The place just oozes coolness. Cool music, super cool receptionist, cool people, cool changing rooms. The place was elegant, modern and stylish and for me, with big windows, fresh flowers and Diptyque candles burning. For me, this is a massive positive as I need to workout somewhere that I actually like being!


1) Everyone in the whole building was skinny and beautiful. I mean really pretty skinny. It could have just been my particular class but as a normal size 10 girl, it was a little intimidating to be 3 sizes bigger than everyone else there.

2) The price. At 40 dollars a class I could never afford to go twice a week and I think you’d need to go regularly to see the real effect that this exercise can do to your body.

Jenny Emslie Photograph

Jenny Emslie

Founder & Managing Director