Home workouts have served us well over the last year, but we all know there is nothing like the endorphin rush of the real thing. There’s something about the social aspect of a group setting, a banging soundtrack and healthy dose of competition that you just can’t beat.
Now the time has finally come, we are officially allowed to train together indoors again, and despite the fact that fitness studios have had to remain closed for the best part of the last year, there are a number of exciting new openings in the capital.
Here are the new gym and studio classes to book now.
Rowbots City, various locations
Want more bang for your buck when it comes to a workout? Look no further than the rowing machine, which works over 80 per cent of your body’s muscles in one stroke. Rowing studios have been popping up all over the city. Footballer Gareth Bale opened his first mindful rowing gym, Rowbots, in Fitzrovia in 2019, and has just opened the brand’s second site near Liverpool Street, which will offer double the space. The 50-minutes workout is based half on the rower and half on the floor - expect to build power, speed and endurance, as you master your tekkers under the watchful eye of Rowbots instructors.
Price: £25/3 classes intro offer
Nobu Pilates, Portman Square
Nobu Portman Square, which opened at the end of 2020, has unveiled an exciting new fitness concept, Nobu Pilates - and no it doesn’t involve sushi, though we wouldn’t object if it did. Marsha Lindsay, creative director of Nobu Pilates, has carefully curated three energising workouts with different focuses. Choose from Power, a HIIT-style Pilates class that incorporates a mini trampoline attached to the end of the carriage and involves deceptively hard choreographed jumps to build strength and lengthen muscles; Precision, a class that focuses on either the upper body or lower body to sculpt and lengthen limbs; or Pure, the closest to an original Joseph Pilates class, which incorporates the reformer carriage, tower and chairs to help you build a rock-hard core.
Price: £75 for the intro offer (including one private class, one group class and a complimentary posture screen).
Karve, High Street Kensington
Karve, a New York loft-style studio, has just opened its doors on High Street Kensington. Founder Yulia Pashevkina says she has developed the high-energy 50-minute “Transformer Pilates” workout, which is set to pumping tunes and takes place on a spring-loaded carriage, to “karve” the body and mind, build strength and drive metabolism. It’s a low impact workout but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s a breeze. Expect plenty of slow side plank crunches, and gruellingly low lunges you’ll feel into in your abs for days.
Price: £40/two classes intro offer.
Strength and conditioning studio UN1T is opening a shiny new studio in Holborn, which will be in addition to its existing London Bridge outpost. UN1T classes are carefully structured over a 12-week training programme, consisting of hypertrophy, strength and power to deliver serious results. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays are strength days, while Tuesdays and Thursday classes are team-based conditioning. Expect those gains. Fast.
Price: £25/drop in.
Lift Studio LDN, Clapham
Lift Studio LDN is a new female-only lifting studio based in Clapham, South London, offering a combination of intimate group sessions and one-on-one personal training alongside nutritional coaching. Member classes will run Monday to Friday and there will be drop-in sessions available on the weekends. Founders and coaches Mimi and Danni will also be offering some reduced rates memberships to people from lower-income backgrounds.
Price: from £250/month for a foundation membership (which includes two classes per week).
The Bear Den, Green Park
If you were one of the many to tune into former Kobox personal trainer Ollie Lee’s (@mroliverlee) fiercely popular Zoom classes during the pandemic, you’ll be pleased to hear he’s just opened a pop-up in central London where you can train with the crew IRL this summer. Taking things back to basics, with a no-frills location in Green Park, The Bear Den is all about having fun - and working hard of course. Each 50 minute workout consists of half an hour of strength and conditioning, 10 minutes of mobility work and another 10 of mindful recovery. Keep an eye on Instagram (@teambrownbear) for the latest news on guest coach appearances over the course of the eight weeks.
Blok London, various locations
East London-based fitness studio Blok has introduced two new classes to celebrate the reopening of its studios. Dharma Flow, a classical yoga style created by Sri Dharma Mittra, which incorporates guided breathwork, progressive opening poses leading into a variety of inversions, will be available to yogis wanting to elevate their flow at the Shoreditch site. Meanwhile, newbies looking to get into the practice should book into New to Yoga, a new session that focuses on helping you to build a thorough understanding of the basic principles of yoga (available at both Blok’s London sites, as well as Manchester).
Price: from £17/class.
F45 Redline, various locations
Craving a gruelling cardio workout to get your heart pumping? After a year of WFH, F45’s new killer circuits class might be just what your cardio vascular fitness needs. Redline is a nine-station class based around a pyramid structure which features escalating workout periods and short bursts of rest, and they’re calling it their “toughest cardio workout yet” - perhaps one to ease yourself into.
Price: varying memberships available.
Want to whip your body and mind into shape pronto? Flex Chelsea has launched a three-week training programme - it takes 21 days to form a habit, or so they say. The Phoenix package includes two PT classes, unlimited classes, personalised daily challenges, body composition analysis and nutrition advice. Get stuck into one of Flex’s new classes while you’re at it, including barre, handstand classes, Reformer Pilates, FLEXit full body and FLEXit Arms & Abs.
Price: £300 for 21-day programme.
Fly LDN, Aldgate
Immersive fitness studio Fly LDN, is launching two new classes this week. Bootycamp is a 45-minute mat-based class that combines light weights and bands to sculpt, hone and strengthen the glutes. If you’re looking to work on your flexibility, meanwhile, Deep House Stretch is a class entirely dedicated to stretching, mobility and self-myofascial release, set to a chilled out playlist - the perfect restorative session if you’ve overdone it on the HIIT front.
Price: from £10/class.