Gyms and Personal Training in London – what we are and we are not!

Just found a website called Urban Path looking at which London gyms and fitness centres had managed to get themselves in to their listing.

Some of the “top” gyms in Clapham, Brixton, Notting Hill, Fitzrovia, Knightsbridge, Covent Garden, Marylebone, Battersea, Fulham and Soho are listed with reviews invited. The comments  are insightful and should give us, the Strength and Conditioning team at Balance, things to think about as we expand further into the world of Personal Training! The negative comments reassure us that we are not making the common errors seen at membership gyms, and the positive comments are similar to the ones we have received consistently for over 8 years.

Some of the other comments tell us we should be sure to manage peoples expectations.

What we are and what we are not!

As we tempt new clients by highlighting the results of our clients and the extent of our  experience and expertise we should be just as clear about what we dont offer. So to avoid some of the comments and criticisms given to the gyms at Urban Path here are some facts to head them off:

  • no joing fees to complain about
  • no Molton Brown shower gel or body lotions
  • we are open 7.30am -9pm Mon- Thurs (close 5pm Fri), 9am-4pm Saturday and shut on Sunday (at moment mostof our clients are happy with that – things may change of course).
  • we have no jacuzzi or sauna
  • we dont have any resistance machines – not even a lat pull down! Consequently you dont have to get annoyed waiting for someone to get off one. We teach our clients who lack confidence in their abilities to gain body awareness and practice movement control so the vast majority of our equipment is free and dynamic (kettlebells and bands) or we simply use our bodyweight. We do have 3 treadmills, a bike or two, a cross trainer, and a concept 2 rower however.
  • we have no direct debit run or contracts. You like it you stay, you want to train outside in the fresh air or at your sports club no problem.
  • there is no juice bar…or nail bar.
  • we sold our bench pressing bench – there are enough in the world and we wanted a bit more space to be creative in.
  • we do have classes:  Kettlebells (5 of them), pilates (3 run by the Pilates Sanctuary), athletic movement, full throttle conditioning – maybe some boxing in the near future, and always looking for a yoga class. We promote Eischens Yoga for home yoga training (especially for those recovering from injury) but have struggled to find a class that resonates with what our clients want.
  • we dont have gym instructors “walking the floor”, although for about 75% of the week we have at least one of the strength and conditioning coaches around to assist physiotherapists with treatment and rehabilitation needs of  clients. The majority of the time those using the Balance facility independently are expected to be independent.

Gym use and personal training.

Its true that we have been doing one to one training with clients since 2001, we have guided individuals to success after success, achieving their unique personal goals. We have seen the widest range of men and women, old and adolescent, with varying goals and aspirations:

  • elite and professional sporting and performance goals;
  • peak conditioning for military operations;
  • recovery from long term illnesses such as chronic fatigue;
  • rehabilitation following major surgery such as heart and lung transplantation;
  • a return to healthier lifestyles and a sense of well being following episodes of mental illness, addictions,  and periods of counselling.
  • and of course a speedy return to work and recreational sports, athletics, dance and martial arts following minor and major inuries or orthopaedic reconstructive operations.

however most of the people who have trained with us have by and large come to us based on Balances reputation as being one of the uk and europes top centres for sports injury treatment and back pain rehabilitation. Now we are opening up a little and inviting those seeking more traditional “personal training” results to come to Balance and see why its more about the training and less about the Molton Brown, sauna or eyebrow technician.


By traditional results I mean:

  • trimming of legs and bums
  • abdominal toning
  • fat and weight loss
  • chiselling chests
  • sculpting shoulders and buttocks

Our approach to health and fitness clients is no different than that taken with sports and performance, injury and illness – train like an athlete, use dynamic movement not machines, train frequently, with discipline and quality, enjoyment and satisfaction.

We also have the most important professional required for weight loss – a dietician, Rees Colling, who will guide you to the inevitable truth, that a sustainable bodyweight can only be achieved with a sustained approach to eating. To find out which way is going to suit you speak with Rees.

For more information on Personal Training at Balance, using the gym independently (pay as you go), strength and conditioning for sports, dance or martial arts, a consultation with Dietician Rees, or coming to us for treatment and rehabilitation go to our contact page – click here.

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