January 7th 2014
If you’ve made any resolutions at all this New Year, exercising more will probably be one of them. But however good your intentions, making time for a regular fitness programme can be difficult, especially in Hong Kong where work and socialising leaves little room for anything else. Those that do find the time to go to the gym tend to do so at set hours, meaning the city’s most popular facilities are generally overrun and impersonal. In this Insider Guide to Hong Kong’s Smaller Gyms, bought to you in conjunction with Kwiksure
, we look at the motivational benefits of training in a tight-knit community environment.
It’s well known that Hong Kong’s biggest gyms have a very high turnover of clients, and it’s hardly surprising that people rarely honour those hefty two-year contracts when you consider that queuing for a treadmill at 7pm on a Wednesday is not an uncommon occurrence. Most who do brave these monster facilities train on their own and rarely interact with other members. These impersonal studios also often fail to properly educate and advise their clients on how best to strengthen and condition their bodies and, as a result, some members may injure themselves or begin to lose interest and motivation after a period of time.
If you're serious about your New Year’s fitness resolutions therefore, it’s worth considering signing up to a smaller, more community-focussed facility, where you’ll get one-on-one time with the trainers and peer support from other members. Think this sounds like the right option for you? Here’s our pick of the best small gyms in Hong Kong.
Situated in Tai Tam on Hong Kong Island’s South Side, Primal Strength
is more than just a gym. Rather than simply signing up members and leaving them to fend for themselves among a sea of machines, the trainers at this state-of-the-art facility operate in accordance to a continually evolving approach to strength and fitness. Their trainers are well schooled in sports science and work closely with each member to provide them with the latest advice on the market to help them achieve their fitness goals.
The 4,000 sqft gymnasium boasts the most up-to-date equipment and welcomes men and women of all ages and ability. Primal Strength also offers a number of specific programmes designed to improve strength, fitness, conditioning or all three, and the pleasant atmosphere and friendly attitude of both trainers and fellow members makes it a popular choice for those looking to get in shape in a more social environment.
Elite PT Studio
Also located on Hong Kong Island’s South Side is the Elite Personal Training Studio
in Wong Chuk Hang. Under the mantra of “Evolve, Progress, Transform”, Elite PT promises to help new members improve their fitness levels and overall health with a real hands-on approach. The studio itself is spacious and modern, equipped with the latest machines and accessories for a full-body workout. The trainers work closely with adults of all abilities in order to provide the motivation to help them to hit their targets hard.
One of the main advantages of becoming a member at Elite PT is the number of outdoor classes and programmes on offer. Among their most popular programmes are the ‘40 Day Challenge’ and ‘Boot Camp Intensive’, both of which involve regular workouts in the great outdoors. This system of mixing it up between indoor and outdoor locations is great for helping to break the monotony of a workout routine, while the resulting team environment sees members encourage each other to achieve.
Coastal Fitness and Warrior Muay Thai
If you’ve reached a plateau in your training and are bored with your current workout, push yourself into new areas of fitness at North Point’s Coastal Fitness Performance Training
(CFPT). This community-driven facility prides itself on its holistic workout formula, challenging those who can run marathons to master gymnastics, and vice-versa.
CFPT follows the science-backed Energy System Training model and believes those with true fitness should be able to perform any physical task exceptionally well. Along with traditional personal training methods therefore, they also provide varied and challenging SMAC group classes (first session free) for those looking to lose weight and build lean muscle through cardiovascular exercise, and CrossFit sessions, which combine weightlifting, gymnastics and monostructural work in a circuit-training format.
Also within the same 13,000 sqft space is Warrior Muay Thai, the largest Thai boxing facility in Hong Kong. Learning a martial art is not only useful but also fun, meaning you’re more likely to look forward to, rather than dread, your regular workout. Want to know more about this increasingly popular 16th century combat sport? Read our Insider Review of a Warrior training session.
RAW Personal Training Studio
The team at RAW
(Real Athletic Workouts) is committed to helping all members meet, and then exceed, their fitness goals. The studio is conveniently located on Wyndham Street in Central and boasts some of the city’s most experienced fitness experts and personal trainers.
The gym is full of specialised equipment, machinery and modern tools that provide a complete full-body workout. Each member is personally welcomed into the gym by a trainer, who then sets out a specific programme and diet plan that aims to smash fitness targets in the quickest and most sustainable way possible.
RAW Personal Training Studio provides a number of classes and associated fitness services, such as one-on-one personal training, biosignature modulation - which focuses on targeting exercise via body fat mapping - and strongman sessions designed to push the boundaries of physical strength and endurance.
RAW has also recently started its Corporate Wellness Programme, aimed at improving the productivity of employees through regular fitness sessions, and an Infrared Sauna, which rids the body of heavy metals that slow down the fat-burning process.
For more insights on health and Hong Kong life, visit the Kwiksure blog.