During the month of March of 2017, I started a personal project about visiting and reviewing gyms in Dubai.
My cumbersome corporate life coupled with the highly convenient aspect of the city had taken a toll on my lifestyle, and along the way of helping my company devise a strategy that helps our clients focus on their health and well-being, I had kinda lost mine; and certainly needed a change.
One of my key challenges towards a more active life has been committing to exercising amid a busy schedule. So I decided to leverage the power of social media, Instagram, to commit, and instead of Dubai entertainment spots, review gyms. A win-win plan where I would stay active by delivering on my commitment and add insight and motivation (I hope) to my followers. Hence #40gymsDubai was born.
I didn’t manage to try & review 40 gyms, but I did try 20 (twenty damn gyms), managed to put my lifestyle back on the fitness road-map, and collect some local & personal insight that I am sharing with you here:
- We have a HUGE diversity of gyms and studios in Dubai, in terms of numbers, and the types of workouts offered. I think I only hit the 20% of them with my project. A great advantage for consumers, but for someone thinking to venture into this business, I would carefully look at how to differentiate as the market is quite crowded.
- Having a workout buddy who could hold you accountable is everything: If you find difficulty committing by yourself, have someone else help you. And contrary to what you may think, you don’t necessarily want to go with someone too advanced in their fitness roadmap because they are probably more used to being independent, and might not find it mutually beneficial as much as a buddy who is facing a struggle similar to yours and may equally need your motivation. Thank you fitness amigos of all levels for being there after the long hours 🙂
- Listen to your soul when it comes to your fitness preferences: there is no right or wrong workout, or approach (assuming it fits your physical health). If you like cycling, focus on that, you don’t have to do Crossift. If you feel bored of going to the same gym all the time, use a network app (Guavapass is my favorite) that allows you to visit many studios per month and try many types of workouts. Whatever works for you.
- Never assume all instructors are experts in what they do, or that you have their full attention. I was injured a couple of times due to an instructor missing warm-up or not being aware of the participants levels. Never miss warm-up. Getting injured takes you back to square one.
- You’re the master of your body; if a part of your body hurts, you have zero reasons to force working it, even if you had to leave the room.
- And last but not least, there are some good outdoor areas in Dubai for jogging. Hitting the streets in the good weather is not a bad idea at all, and makes you explore hidden gems in your neighbourhood that you would otherwise never cross.
Here are all the gyms/studios/experiences I tried (links take you directly to my reviews on Instagram – You can also find all the posts in one click on this #40GymsDubai Tag):
- GFX, Business Bay – Zumba
- Atone Fitness Lounge, Business Bay – Cross-Cuit
- Crossfit Alioth, Al Quoz – Crossfit
- Round 10 Boxing Club, Al Quoz – Boxing
- Fitness First, DIFC – Power Yoga
- Cadence Theory, DIFC – Group Cycling
- ROAR Puma ME x Guavapass, Dubai Design District – Functional Training
- The Burj Club, Burj Khalifa, Downtown – Pound
- Gogobounce at Train Strength & Fitness, Al Quoz – Urban Hip-Hop Dance
- Dhyana Dubai, Business Bay – Power Yoga
- Fit Inc, Sheikh Zayed Road – Zumba
- Define Body & Mind, Dubai Marina – Group Cycling
- The Warehouse Gym, Al Quoz, Crossfit
- Quantum Health Club, The H hotel – Sheikh Zayed Raod – Virtual Body Pump
- Bespoke Ride, Al Quoz – Group Cycling
- Fitness First – Business Bay – Open Gym
- Zoga, Downtown Dubai – Yin Yoga
- Nike Run Club, Tuesday Evenings, Zaabeel Park – Running
- Motion Cycling, Business Bay – Soul Cycling
- Marasi park, Business Bay – Yoga
My Top 5 favorites gyms <3 :
- The Warehouse Gym, Al Quoz
- Cadence Theory, DIFC
- Motion Cycling, Business Bay
- Bespoke Ride, Al Quoz
- Define Body & Mind, Dubai Marina
To those who have followed my journey, thank you for the motivation, and I hope my reviews helped you somehow.