Jan. 23, 2024 By Maxwell Murray
A new fitness center has just arrived in Long Island City, centered on holistic exercise goals, community, and charity.
The Trinity gym, located on 11th Street by 44th Avenue, is owned by Irish immigrants Seamus Keane, 34, and John Collins, 36, born out of an idea and an escape nearly six years ago.
“It’s better to be at the bottom rung of the right ladder than in the middle of the wrong one,” thought founder Seamus Keane as he exited his comfortable Wall Street job to enter the world of fitness.
Keane had a common problem in NYC: he disliked his job and was lacking exercise.
Realizing he needed to get himself back in shape, he took up a new exercise and nutrition routine and gradually shared his progress with eager coworkers who eventually convinced him to become a personal trainer.
Buzzing with inspiration, Keane began training a small group of willing members in Central Park after work before making the daring move of quitting his job in finance.
“To be honest with you I was scared. I had all the things you’re supposed to want in life, a good salary, pension, benefits. But I wasn’t happy.”
Under the name, Clann Health, Keane hosted in-person, and virtual classes before and throughout the pandemic. He then teamed up with his friend and teacher-turned-trainer, John Collins, and formed The Trinity Gym, securing a new indoor facility in February 2021.
Or, so they thought.
In the middle of winter, the night before their first indoor classes, the event space told them it was a no-go.
“We told everyone, listen, the first exercise we’ll be doing tomorrow is shoveling snow because we’ll be outside.”
Despite the unfortunate news of their anticipated new indoor location, Keane, Collins and their devoted members, did not give up. They continued to grow into the spring, reaching 20 members. By summer, they amassed 50 members — with some transitioning to trainers.
Now, the core group is up to five trainers who work with their 50 members. And finally, the group has an indoor space to call their own.
Collins and Keane, who both come from County Mayo, believe that the 1,500-square-ft. space is optimal for conducting personalized programs for their current and future members, spacious enough for everyone to reach their own goals, and the next step in expanding their membership.
“The new space opens up so many opportunities for us,” Keane said. “We were a bit limited in the equipment we could offer. But now, we can really ramp up our strength program with full sets of dumbbells, kettlebells and barbells and a variety of machines for our cardio programs.”
The group believes that other traditional gyms do not provide enough care or attention to their members. At the Trinity Gym, it is a strict belief that a ratio of one trainer to six members is ideal for performance, safety, and long-term success.
“We went around to all of the competition and noticed that a big problem was that there is a uniform class for everyone. Here at Trinity, everyone has their own program that’s suitable and scalable for their level,” Keane said.
Beyond the realm of fitness, the Trinity Gym team is especially proud of the community they’ve fostered over the years, and their commitment to charity.
In 2022, the group organized a 6K run, bringing in over 2,000 participants, and raising over $200,000 for the Aisling Irish Community Center in Yonkers. They have also organized other, smaller events: raising money for NYC homelessness and for educational initiatives in Africa.
“We called it The Trinity because it’s going to be fitness, community, and giving back. We pride ourselves on the community aspect. That’s what it’s all about for us.” said co-founder John Collins.
The group is excited to keep their home-base in Queens, and looks forward to meeting new members at their new address: 44-02 11 St., Suite 510, LIC.
“What I love about New York and New Yorkers is the can-do attitude,” Keane said. “If you want to be something, you can do it. If I was in Ireland, I may not have had the confidence. Everyone has been so supportive along the way here, and I’m just excited to keep going.”
New York residents can contact the Trinity Gym through their website at www.thetrinitynyc.com