When it comes to gyms, flexibility is more than just a work-out goal – it’s also what most people are looking for out of their membership.
By offering a range of pricing options and long opening hours, gyms are increasingly helping people build fitness routines around their busy lives. In recent years, a number of gyms and fitness centres across London have responded to this growing demand for flexibility by offering pay-as-you-go rates, both through one-off day passes or membership packages that offer monthly access for a certain number of days per month. We’ve picked out 12 of the best pay-as-you-go gyms across the capital.
For its scope of facilities and services, this award-winning health and fitness club is hard to beat. A minute’s walk from Tottenham Court Road tube station, the venue claims to offer the largest choice of exercise classes in London, with a whopping 125-plus on the programme. 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, 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.
Fitzrovia / Mon-Sun 6.30am-8.30pm Sat-Sun 9am-4.30pm
Situated close to Covent Garden tube station, this adults-only gym is spread across two floors and features state-of-the-art equipment in a light and spacious setting. On the lower floor is the weights section, complete with both free weights and a range of resistance training machines, along with cardiovascular equipment including treadmills, cross-trainers, 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.
Covent Garden / Mon-Thurs 7am-10pm Fri 7am-9pm Sat-Sun 10am-6pm
Another popular Covent Garden fitness venue, this is one of the largest gyms on our list – and indeed anywhere in the capital – set within a huge, naturally-lit former 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 / Mon-Thurs 6.30am-9pm Fri 6.30am-5pm Sat-Sun 9.30an-5.30pm
The largest of the King’s Sport gym facilities, this gym is kitted out with all the latest fitness equipment. Situated just a short walk from Temple Station in the heart of the city, whether it’s cardio or resistance training, there’s everything you need for an effective and efficient workout. There are also daily classes with a dedicated instructor who helps create a social atmosphere and is dedicated to getting you fitter faster. The gym’s central location also makes it the ideal spot for commuters and workers to stop off for a session at after work or squeeze into their lunch break.
Aldwych / Mon-Fri 7am-10pm Sat-Sun 10am-6pm
Positioned in the centre of London between Chancery Lane and Holborn stations, this is one of the newer additions to the city’s fitness scene – and is accordingly decked out with all the latest high-tech equipment. They have an extensive free weights section consisting of six benches, an Olympic lifting platform, and resistance machines. There’s also plenty of cardio equipment available, including running machines, cross trainers and spinning bikes. Meanwhile two studios, including a purpose-built Peloton Studio, host over 80 classes a week. The closest tube stations are Holborn and Chancery Lane but you could also walk from Temple, Blackfriars or City Thameslink stations.
Chancery Lane / Mon-Thurs 6.45am-8.30pm Fri 6.45am-8pm Closed Sun-Mon
A community gym in Palmers Green, north London, VO2 offers a whole array of classes as well as usage of their premium Technogym equipment. For real gym buffs, there’s an Olympic weightlifting platform. Those seeking standard workouts can join Dynamic Stretching, Group Cycle, Zumba, pole dancing and boxanity, or let loose with some yoga or Pilates. The gym also has a ‘MyWellness’ app which lets you interact with the Technogym equipment by creating a profile and following your progress digitally.
Green Lanes / Mon-Thurs 6am-10pm Fri 6am-9.30pm Sat 7am-6pm Sun 8am-6pm
You can book this gym at Groupon for discounted rates of up to 80% off
This award-winning gym in bustling Borough is spread over a large space, meaning you can workout without worrying about getting in anyone’s way, and can usually find a free machine too. The state of the art equipment includes cardio machines, large free weights area, resistance machines, plate loaded machines and kit for functional training. For hardcore strength training, there’s also an Olympic lifting platform with bumper plates, six squatting stations and a vast selection of kettlebells, and amateur pugilists can make use of fitted punch bags too. Guests can finish off their session with a relaxing stint in the sauna.
Borough / Mon-Fri 6am-10pm Sat-Sun 8am-8pm
Offering some of the best gym facilities in the Southwark district, this gym 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.
Southwark / Mon-Thurs 6am-10pm Fri 6am-9pm Sat-Sun 8am-6pm
Tokei Martial Arts and Fitness Centre
Harness the power of ultra-modern gym equipment to reach your fitness goals, or take your first steps in the ancient and traditional martial arts at this renowned martial arts and fitness centre in the historic district of Southwark. The gym has a full range of cardio machines, resistance machines, free weights and other equipment, plus free space for mat or body exercises. Meanwhile, martial arts classes on offer include Brazilian jiu jitsu, karate, wrestling, judo, Thai boxing, and san shou kuan.
Southwark / Mon-Fri 6.30am-9pm Sat 9am-5pm Closed Sun
You can book this gym at Groupon for discounted rates of up to 70% off
Colombo Sport Centre
A warm and welcoming fitness centre in Southwark, just a short walk north of Southwark tube station, this open and airy gym is fitted out with an extensive quantity of fitness equipment. Whether you want to flex your muscle on the wide range of strength equipment, feel the burn on their array of cardiovascular equipment, or join a professionally-led class, there’ll be something for you. The venue also has outdoor courts and pitches for when the weather is warm. Personal training is available for those with more intense or immediate fitness goals.
Southwark / Mon-Fri 6.45am-10pm Sat-Sun 9am-5pm