This year I’ve attended a number of cycle classes in London (BoomCycle, Groovecycle, CycleBeat, 1Rebel, Edge Cycle and Ride Republic) and I thought it would be useful to compile a comparative review of them all. I like to use ClassPass and SoMuchMore to keep my exercise routine flexible and experimental. SoMuchMore has kindly given me the discount code WW4URBAN for you to use to get 25% off on both their card options.
When trying out a new type of exercise class, I think it’s best to try a couple of different ones to get a sense of different interpretations of the class format and how demanding each one is. When trying out new classes I always try to assess the following things- Atmosphere, Clientele, Instructor/s, Music, and Type of Workout. I've also given each class a 'bang for your buck' star sweat rating (✪ Not Very Sweaty- ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪ Very Sweaty) to indicate how much of a workout each class is!
Let's get started!
BOOMCYCLE ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪
|Vibe||Fun, slick, trendy|
|Clientele||Mostly working professionals, female, aged 22-44|
|Music||Inspiring, popular anthems, sing- along|
|Type of workout||Weekday evening, HIIT, good warm ups and cool downs|
BoomCycle describes itself as ‘A high energy, bike-based, music focussed fitness experience’, welcoming beginners and advertising itself as a ‘workout for all’. There are two locations, one in Shoreditch location and the other in Holborn, making it perfect for city workers especially with classes starting as early as 06.30 and as late as 20.15. Their studios are well equipped with free Wi-Fi and changing areas, featuring showers, free towels, lockers and hairdryers. Classes are either 30 minutes or 40 minutes and purchasing classes operates on a credit system, meaning you buy credits and different class times and packages are worth a different number of credits. BoomCycle is on ClassPass and they have a £25 introductory offer, which entitles you to 3 rides within a 14-day period.
CYCLEBEAT ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪
|Clientele||Cycling pros, athletes, male majority, aged 25-55|
|Music||Mix of old and new|
|Type of workout||Combines constant climbs, speed and more intensity|
Cyclebeat is unique in that at the front of each class there is a Beatboard. This board displays every rider’s performance so you know exactly how you’re doing. This is incredibly motivating for many, especially those with a competitive streak! Even if you choose to opt out of appearing on the Beatboard, the technology still stores your performance details and emails you this after every ride. This allows you to easily track your progress and mark personal bests. Cyclebeat takes pride in its music and the online booking system allows you to check out the music tastes of each instructor before deciding which class to go to as well as sampling the Spotify playlist for upcoming and past classes.
Cyclebeat is located in the centre of London, right by Bank and London Bridge station. Their introductory offer is £20 for unlimited rides in a 10-day period and they're also on ClassPass and SoMuchMore. The studio has showers and lockers, as well as towels for hire. It is also possible to hire Cyclebeat cycling shoes.
GROOVECYCLE (AT REEBOK'S SPORTS CLUB now THIRD SPACE) ✪ ✪ ✪
|Vibe||Fun, no money spared, emphasis on the music|
|Instructor/s||Cool, inspiring, very coordinated!|
|Type of workout||Constant movement using whole body, multitasking|
GrooveCycle operates at Reebok’s Sports Club in Canary Wharf. Taking its inspiration from dance and movement classes, Groovecycle is about having fun, whilst conditioning the whole body and not just the legs unlike other indoor cycle classes. Combining dance with cycling makes for a different workout and eliminates the worry of having two left feet!
There is also the opportunity to incorporate hand weights into the workout. Reebok’s Sports Club has the largest indoor cycling studio in Europe as well as well-equipped changing facilities and a steam room and sauna. Like many of the classes, there is an introductory package for new customers (£25 for unlimited classes within 14 days) and it's on ClassPass and SoMuchMore.
1REBEL ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪
|Vibe||Really cool, amazing lighting and DJ booths|
|Instructor/s||Accessible, professional and helpful|
|Music||Hip Hop, Old School, Contemporary|
|Type of workout||HIIT workout, some arm weights|
Described by GQ as ‘The King of gyms’, 1Rebel prides itself on attempting to revolutionise the fitness industry. Their two boutique studios in the City feature amazing interiors, spacious changing facilities equipped with top end grooming products and even a smoothie bar for a post workout energy boost. 1Rebel is about high intense fitness sessions against a backdrop of live entertainment, with bespoke playlists curated and mixed by internationally acclaimed DJs.
Classes are £20 each but there are several packages available (& ClassPass and SoMuchMore). Sessions are between 30-45 minutes and classes start as early as 6am, which allows city workers to easily fit in a workout before work.
EDGE CYCLE ✪ ✪ ✪
|Vibe||Found it a bit odd that the studio is in an office building but staff all friendly!|
|Clientele||Professionals, all between the ages of 25-35|
|Instructor/s||All very friendly, diverse with different specialities|
Salsa music/ contemporary and motivating and popular tunes for ride classes
|Type of workout||A mixture, depending on the class you choose but less gym like than other classes|
Edge Cycle is one of the biggest dedicated cycling studios in the UK. With a central London location, there is a wide range of diverse classes differing in both duration and in content. They have classes for newbies in addition to a free 30-minute learn to ride induction class. They also have boot camp classes, combining indoor cycling with floor exercises, as well as classes that combine yoga/dancing/ weights and martial arts with cycling. I attended the ‘Edge Latin Craze’ class, which mixes Latin music and dance with their classic cycle class. As with the others, the studio features good changing facilities and showers and towels and lockers are available to hire. Your first class is free and after that classes are £15 or cheaper when purchasing a package.They are also on ClassPass and SoMuchMore.
RIDE REPUBLIC ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪
|Vibe||Clean and spa-like, great staff!|
|Clientele||Local yummy mummies and daddies|
|Instructor/s||Inspiring and motivating|
|Music||Fun, pop, sing-along|
|Type of workout||Weekday morning, HIIT, jumps, arm weights|
Ride Republic’s studio is located in Fulham rather than the City, which is more convenient for those living or working in South-West London. Its location also helps add to a greater sense of community, as a place to make friends with likeminded people and work out with the same familiar faces. Ride Republic classes are designed for all levels and like CycleBeat, use technology to monitor your progress and provide real-time feedback on your achievements in class. Their flagship class, ‘Burn 45’, uses a Burn Board to chart the Top 10 in the class and encourages riders to push themselves. Some of the other classes feature cardio and core exercises alongside indoor cycling and they also have events and themed classes such as the popular Hip Hop Ride. Their introductory offer is £30 for three rides and after that is £20 per class. They are on ClassPass and packages are also available as well as a special package for April, combining Bikes and Bikram with unlimited yoga all month at The Hot Spot Yoga also in Fulham.