When it comes to gyms, it’s not just Yoga and Pilates that can give you increased flexibility. By offering a range of pricing options and long opening hours they can also provide flexible access in a way that helps customers build their fitness routine around their busy lives. In recent years, a number of gyms and fitness centres across London have responded to this growing demand by offering pay-as-you-go rates, both with one-off day-passes or membership packages that offer monthly access for a certain number of days per month.
If you’re looking for flexible gym access, there are a wide range of options across London, many of which enjoy a central location. To help you find one that suits your needs, we’ve picked out 12 of the best.
When it comes to its sheer scope of facilities and services, this award-winning health and fitness club is exceedingly hard to beat. Conveniently located a minute’s walk from Tottenham Court Road tube station, the venue claims to offer the largest choice of exercise classes in London (over 125). It has a split-level cardio zone with enough machines to guarantee you’ll never be left waiting, while a spacious free weights area lets you pump iron with no risk of fellow gym-goers getting in your way. There’s also a 25-metre indoor pool offering lane swimming, six exercise studios, a sauna and steam room, health and beauty therapists, and a punch bag. For fans of racket sports, there are also three badminton courts – an unusual feature for a London gym. Towels are available for an extra charge.
LOCATION Fitzrovia HOURS Mon-Fri 6.30pm-10pm Sat 9.30am-8.30pm Sun 9.30pm-6.30pm
A minute’s walk from Covent Garden tube station, this adults-only gym is spread across two floors and features modern equipment in a spacious setting. On the lower floor is the weights section, complete with both free weights and a range of resistance machines, along with cardiovascular machines including treadmils, crosstrainers, step machines and bikes. The upper floor offers stretching mats, kettlebells, metal dumbbells and boxing pads. Other notable facilities include a swimming pool, a steam room and sauna, and a spin studio. There is no on-site parking.
LOCATION Covent Garden HOURS Mon-Thurs 7am-10pm Fri 7am-9pm Sat-Sun 10am-6pm
Visitors to the St James’ branch of Fitness Space can make use of an impressive variety of equipment and other facilities, including brand new Technogym treadmills, skillmills, cross trainers, rowers, bikes and plenty more. Resistance machines, free weights and benches are also in ample supply allowing you to get through your routine in quick speed, without having to wait for equipment to become free. Dedicated fitness trainers and other staff are on hand to help gym-goers with any questions they may have about specific exercises or anything else. Piccadilly tube station is 5 minutes away on foot.
LOCATION St James’s HOURS Mon-Thurs 6am-9pm Fri 6am-8pm Fri 8am-4pm Closed Sun
Another popular Covent Garden facility, this is one of the largest gyms on our list – and indeed anywhere in the capital – set within a vast, naturally-lit market hall. Owned and run by the Jubilee Hall Trust, a not-for-profit organisation that promotes good health through leisure and recreation, the gym boasts a huge selection of free weights and resistance machines. Treadmills and bike machines all have built-in televisions and headphone power points. The gym also puts on regular classes, including boxing, spinning, flamenco dancing and pilates, and there’s a sauna and café too. Covent Garden tune station is just moment away, and for those keen to stay active after leaving the gym, there’s a London Cycle Hire docking station just around the corner.
LOCATION Covent Garden HOURS Mon-Fri 6.45am-10pm Sat 9am-9pm Sun 10am-5pm
Housed within a historic building featuring its original marble flooring and dating back to the 1930s, this gym simply oozes character. But don’t be mistaken, it’s also fully up-to-date when it comes to its facilities, while an £11 million renovation has given it a contemporary flourish. A wide range of exercise equipment, including free weights, benches, resistance and cardio machines, are all available. On their first visit, all new guests must register for an Everyone Active Card and watch a 15-minute online induction video before accessing the gym. The nearest tube station is Oxford Circus, which is a 5-minute walk away.
LOCATION Soho HOURS Mon-Fri 6.30am-10pm Sat-Sun 8am-8pm
Just a few minutes’ walk from St Paul’s tube station, and set against the iconic backdrop of St Paul’s Cathedral, this gym offers an excellent assortment of state-of-the-art equipment, including free weights, resistance machines and cardio machines such as treadmills, elliptical trainers and exercise cycles – all equipped with personal televisions to keep you entertained during your work out. Fitness aids and accessories such as Swiss balls are also available. There’s also a fitness studio and guests can take part in group exercise classes for an extra charge.
LOCATION St Paul’s HOURS 24/7
If you’re looking for a small, intimate place to exercise and don’t require early morning access, this boutique club and spa may well suit your needs. Opening at 11am midweek and 10am on weekends, the venue’s centrepiece attraction is its luxurious spa with a steam room, sauna and Jacuzzi. The gym area is small but well-equipped with free weights and resistance machines, and the cardio equipment comes fitted with TV screens. Complimentary towels are provided for all guests and bottled water is available too. Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square tube stations are both an easy walk away. For guests with their own car, on-site parking is available at an extra charge.
LOCATION Piccadilly HOURS Mon-Fri 11am-8pm Sat 10am-7pm Sun 10am-6pm
Spread across two levels, this gym houses cutting edge Technogym cardio equipment, complemented by weight resistance machines and free weights on both levels. Other facilities include a swimming pool, sauna, steam room and Jacuzzi. A word too for the swanky changing rooms which boast stylish walnut faced lockers and glass fronted showers. One free towel is provided for all guests. Children are welcome here too, with under 5s going free. King’s Cross tube and mainline stations are a 14-minute walk away.
LOCATION King’s Cross HOURS Mon-Fri 6.30am-10pm Sat-Sun 7.30am-9pm
This is one of the facilities on our list with the earliest weekday opening hours, with access from 6am from Monday to Friday. Benefitting from a recent revamp, the club’s modern and stylish décor combines with a superb choice of high-spec facilities, including resistance machines, Technogym cardio machines and free weights. There’s also a powerplate and a dedicated Functional Training Zone containing Omnia 8 equipment. Spa facilities include a 17-metre pool offering lane swimming, a sauna, a steam room and a Jacuzzi. Russell square tube station can be easily reached in 4 minutes on foot.
LOCATION Russell Square HOURS Mon-Fri 6am-9.30pm Sat-Sun 9.30am-6pm
Another convenient choice for those who like to start early, Fitness4Less opens at 6am on weekdays and 8am on weekends. Offering some of the best gym facilities in the Southwark district, it can often get busy but the large range of equipment ensures you can usually find what you need. Among the facilities are treadmills, cross trainers, bikes and rowers as well as a large free weights area including Olympic weights. There’s also a mat area, a studio space where you can do yoga and pilates and a separate spin bike studio as well. Southwark tube station is just a hop, skip and jump away.
LOCATION Southwark HOURS Mon-Thurs 6am-10pm Fri6am-9pm Sat-Sun 8am-6pm
Located on London’s prestigious Regent Street, and part of the University of Westminster, this well-appointed gym has a wide variety of cardio and resistance stations, along with a generous choice of free weights – including Olympic weights – at the rear of the main work-out area. Other notable facilities include a boxing bag room, lifting rooms, a fitness studio and a powerplate, and there’s also a busy programme of classes available to members. Personal training is also on offer. The nearest tube station is Oxford Circus, a mere 3-minute walk away.
LOCATION Marylebone HOURS Mon-Thurs 7am-9pm Fri 7am-9.30pm Sun 11.30am-3pm Close Sat
Part of the YWCA Central Club, a charitable organisation which aims to improve the lives of women in London, this female-only gym is located close to the southern end of Southward Bridge. A stylish and contemporary facility, it offers the very latest in fitness technology with equipment supplied by Pulse Fitness. As well as an impressive range of free weights and machines, there’s also a treatment room where you can book indulgent massages, as well as a meeting and conference room available for hire. A licensed café provides somewhere to relax and unwind over a healthy meal, a coffee or a glass of wine after your work-out. London Bridge tube station is a 7-minute walk away.
LOCATION Southwark HOURS Mon-Thurs 7.30am-9pm Fri 7.30am-8.15pm Sat-Sun 9.30am-6pm