Bowling your way to fitness in East Falls

Rolling a bowling ball and lifting bowling pins can now be a part of your exercise routine at a new fitness center in East Falls.

Sweat Fitness, the locally-owned and operated fitness chain, will host a bowling alley at its tenth location, One Falls Center at 3300 Henry Ave., called Sweat Fitness and Frames. The gym includes a fitness center, weight room and classes ranging from cycling to “Bowling for Fitness” classes.

“We’ve worked with our regular fitness instructors and have tailored a bowling workout,” said Scott Caplan, co-owner. “It will be like a circuit workout. The balls will be used like kettlebells.”

Kettlebells are weighted balls that are used for cardiovascular and strength training. Caplan says he doesn’t know of any other fitness workout that includes the use of bowling balls and pins. “There’s nothing like it in the world,” continued Caplan.

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A local entrepreneur

Caplan, a native Philadelphian, began personal training in 1996 and soon opened his own gym called Old City Ironworks before eventually opening the first Sweat Fitness location at 23rd and Walnut streets.

After closing a bowling alley he owned in University City, Strikes Bowling Lounge, he had it dismantled and moved to the new Sweat Fitness spot.

“That location only worked seasonally,” said Caplan, “we had college kids coming and going. This location is better, it’s a great area and there’s free and ample parking.”

Matthew Canno, an investor of the gym, says the area is ideal because it’s close to Center City, but not in town.

“The area is great for recreational activities,” said Canno. “This space is really for all people – families, students, couples. Anyone can come here and bowl, bring their own bottle – in our design we really focused on comfort.”

Creating an East Falls recreational hot-spot

The bowling area includes two floors and 10 lanes as well as lounge-like seating. The lanes also feature a kegerator, as bowlers are permitted to bring their own bottles and have pizza delivered. Eventually, the group would like to set up a concession stand.

Bowling is included in the membership fee and members from all Sweat Fitness locations may use the bowling alley during off-peak hours. Lanes will be open during gym hours and later, including until 1 a.m. on the weekends.

The group also has an arrangement with nearby Les Petits Cherubs, which is located within the Falls Center, for gym members to drop their kids off at the daycare while they work out, per an additional fee.

The group says they will continue to promote a good relationship with fellow Falls Center businesses and hopes to plan activities with Philadelphia University staff and students. 

A grand opening special at the gym will let you work out for free until September if you sign up by June 30. Visit for more details. 

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