You can descend the steps to the basement by Health goth workout and walking toward the graffiti wall, turning left at the 11-foot pentagram (watch your head for a bicycle suspended from the ceiling) and passing the polished gimp suit.
There is no light in the room, and all we can see are 34 sweaty bodies rising and falling in unison. A stage is situated in front of the audience, with two huge video screens playing footage of Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor wearing leather blindfolds and swinging from chains. Michael Macneal, the heavily tattooed master of ceremonies, stands on stage. The tattoo on his right arm is seen rising upwards. Suddenly, the beat drops. Everyone yells, “Hell yeah!”
The Electronic Body Music Festival (also known as E.B.M.) is not a fetish night, a goth club or a fetish night.
Gym rats and goths have come together to hold an indoor cycling exercise class at the newly opened Monster Cycle studio in SoHo.
“Welcome to Health goth workout”
Health goth workout (or perhaps just #healthgoth) originated as an Internet meme in which three friends posted online images of fitness gear set in unusual settings: a ghostly white Nike hoodie floating in a transparent cube, for instance.
Social media is fueling the latest micro trends like seapunk and normcore. This is the most prevalent form of #healthgoth – by posting hashtagged selfies to Tumblr and Instagram that show yogis, runners, lifters, and others sporting piercings, tattoos, and brooding fitness gear.
Against the backdrop of cyborg sportswear on the street and in the cardio room, mainstream brands like Nike, Adidas and Under Armour are competing with gothic streetwear brands such as Hood by Air, Cottweiler, Whatever 21, NVRMD Clothing, Adyn and Skingraft. Rick Owens, Nasir Mazhar, and Norma Kamali dress the fashion-forward set.
In 2013, Portland, Oregon, native Mike Grabarek coined the term “health goth.” He is a member of the group Magic Fades. The idea for the song developed as he and two friends – Jeremy Scott, of the band, and Chris Cantino, a video artist – began to experiment online. Photographs and logos of athletic brands in gothic style were posted on the web, as were photos of metal-punk-meets-Pilates photos.
They started the Health Goth Facebook community page after they realized how much their images were appreciated and shared online. More than 18K people have liked the page so far. In addition to photographs of people dressed in gothic-leaning athletic gear, the artist has also created imagery – sometimes eerie and sometimes creepy. More than 250 health goth fans liked a photo of black sneakers floating upside-down in a pool.
In the 1980s, Johnny Love (real name John Dal Santo) championed health goth as a fitness trend. He is a Chicago D.J. and producer of electronic dance music known as Deathface. After a healthier lifestyle in 2012, he lost 20 pounds. I was asked after I turned 30 if I wanted to be Deathface or Fatface?’ ” he said.
Rather than post grainy fitness videos and pictures on Tumblr or Instagram, he hastened the posts with the hashtag #healthgoth. Soon others joined in. During an interview with Vice in July about the record “Cry for Black Dawn,” he laid out what he called the 10 Commandments of #Healthgoth, including don’t look in the mirror at the gym. The Healthgoths wait until they get home to flex so they can see how big their lats are getting.” (The article carried the headline: “Deathface Wants you to Stop Eating Carbs.”.)
As a result, Mr. Love created his own Facebook page – “health goth” – as well as a website, healthgoth.com. (Mr. Love and Mr. Grabarek are not friends. Each party claims credit for the idea.)
The website of Mr. Love is adorned with jimmied logos of sportswear brands like Nike and Adidas. The Nike swoosh is accompanied by the word “DEATH.” An upside-down silhouette of Michael Jordan is shown on the Nike page. “I don’t like corporate worship,” Love said. No comment was forthcoming from Nike.