For a change from Climbing Walls of London, we took a couple of weeks of and have been going to hot yoga instead. We have been to Fitness on Fire before and we found a Groupon Voucher so we went back.
Here are our thoughts on it.
Fitness on Fire is situated just behind St Luke’s Church in London’s Old St (EC1). In the basement of an office block.
You need a code to get in through the door and after descending you find yourself in a small reception – which seems to be unstaffed during the day. So you sign in on a piece of paper.
There is only one studio and all have to wait for the previous class to empty out and then rush through the door to grab mats and get in position for the next class.
Which is fine, except for us men, because the men’s changing room is at the far end of the studio and wow what a treat you have once you get there.
There is a tiny changing area and one plastic shower, with a sheet curtain and it is all broken. There are lockers in a room that is 1metre wide, so if there are 2 or more men trying to change and get ready for the next class it is a fight, like sardines in a can.
The best option is to grab your stuff and head for the toilet, which takes up over half the changing room. The pipe work and walls are all rotten and broken.
But if you are a woman then it’s a different story.
Just look at the pictures!
There are… showers.
100’s of lockers and SPAAAAAAAACE.
After seeing what the men’s changing room is like, this is expansive. However with the amount of women vs men it makes sense. Although there is space the women tend to crowd around the lockers doing their makeup as there is a long mirror just at shoulder height. There are three showers which are normally jam packed with a cue, however from the looks alone they look rather spacious. I have tended to get changed in the disabled toilet as it is HUGE and there is no barging or awkwardness when trying to fight for space. There’s not a huge practicality in space, as there is no designated changing area, so you kind of dump your stuff on the floor and get on with it. I find it a bit strange that the front door is right by the ladies changing room, so if you were getting changed and someone came in you would be exposed to anyone who is waiting in the hallway.
There is variation in classes daily, some are faster, slower, more dynamic or more meditation based. You can try a bunch and settle on the one you like the most. Signing up to a class is simple, you go on their website and look at the schedule and book.
As for the teachers/instructors, there are a variety of classes as we said, but teachers tend to take two or three classes consecutively and some do a lot of classes throughout the week, so if you like that style, great, lot’s of choice. However trying a slower type or finding someone you can understand can be difficult.
A few of the teachers have some strange terms and they seem to expect you to know where your Mooli Bundi is and how to contract it. There isn’t much help for beginners or those that don’t do intense courses or the like or speak Yogi.
For those who haven’t tried Hot Yoga, the classes are like normal yoga, but there are big heaters in the back of the room raising the temperature to a nice, toasty level, to simulate the heat of a Indian Yogic temple.
In conclusion we like Fitness on Fire and have been there a number of times, but they seriously need to sort out the changing rooms and the administrative/reception side of things, because anyone can sign in as anybody and not be registered at all and there is never any staff there during the day.
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