As COVID-19 forced gym and exercise studio closures across the country last year, demand for at-home exercise equipment soared. Peloton, with its premium bikes and charismatic instructors, was a popular alternative to studio classes. Peloton's revenue soared last year to $758 million — up 232% from the previous year. Investors took notice, too; Peloton stock (PTON) saw 400% growth in 2020.
With bikes starting at $1,895 and treadmills at $2,495, Peloton equipment is an investment. [Editor's note: On May 5, 2021 Peloton voluntarily recalled its treadmill products over safety concerns.] Peloton offers flexible 0% interest financing through Affirm that can help make purchases attainable for more customers. Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Sapphire Reserve cardholders can also earn bonus points for Peloton purchases. On top of the equipment costs, there's also a $39 monthly subscription fee to access classes on your Peloton bike or treadmill. Bottom line: Owning a Peloton isn't cheap, but over one million people pay the $39 fee each month.
One key to Peloton's success is its roster of instructors. With a blend of talents, including athleticism, musicality, and loquaciousness, Peloton instructors can reach the homes of tens of thousands of subscribers each time they teach a class.
This past year provided some unique challenges for Peloton's team of instructors. They had to pivot and find creative ways to keep live video classes rolling even during COVID-19 closures. Classes moved into instructors' homes for a time, filmed by the instructors themselves, allowing subscribers to see a more personal and intimate side of the Peloton pros. When the instructors could return to the studio, they did so surrounded by empty bikes, coaching only to the camera and not a studio full of riders.
Most Popular Peloton Instructors in Every State
Ask a Peloton owner who their favorite instructors are, and they'll definitely have an opinion. Each Peloton instructor has their own style, and over time, you find who you vibe with and who you don't. The instructors come from a wide range of backgrounds — from professional dancers to Olympic athletes, even a former investment banker and former school principal. Their teaching styles are as varied as their backgrounds — from Cody Rigsby, who keeps riders laughing, to Alex Toussaint, who dishes out tough love motivation, there really is someone for everyone.
In the wake of Peloton's surge in popularity, we thought it would be fun to see which instructors are most popular in each state based on Google search trends. We evaluated Google Trends data covering a one-year period from mid-April 2020 to mid-April 2021.
Seven states didn't have enough search volume for us to declare a winner among
any of Peloton's 40+ instructors, but we were able to declare a winner in the 43
other states and the District of Columbia.
Queen Ally Love is the most-searched instructor in eight states: Alabama, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Oregon, and Vermont.
New mom Robin Arzón finishes first in five states: Connecticut, Hawaii, Louisiana, New Jersey, and Oklahoma.
Professional cyclist and guest instructor Christian Vande Velde holds the top spot in four states: Arizona, Iowa, Tennessee, and Utah.
Four other instructors are the most Googled in three states each:
- Sam Yo: Florida, Georgia, and Texas
- Kendall Toole: Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia
- Hannah Corbin: Kentucky, Missouri, and Nevada
- Alex Toussaint: D.C., Mississippi, and South Carolina
Other favorite instructors getting a spot on the list include:
- Emma Lovewell (California)
- Rebecca Kennedy (Colorado)
- Jess Sims (Delaware and Wyoming)
- Matt Wilpers (Illinois and Washington)
- Leanne Hainsby (Maryland)
- Cody Rigsby (Massachusetts and New York)
- Anna Greenberg (Michigan)
- Adrian Williams (Minnesota)
- Chase Tucker (New Mexico)
- Andy Speer (North Carolina)
- Becs Gentry (Rhode Island)
- Bradley Rose (Wisconsin)
Peloton instructors are a competitive bunch, so if you're an instructor who’s reading and you didn't make the list, rest assured you are loved just as much — just not Googled as often as your colleagues. And there's always next year.
View our full report on the top fitness trends in every state.