Words Joy Montgomery
With London’s yuppies become more and more health-obsessed, the demand for themed workout spaces shows no sign of abating. Whether it’s spinning, ballet, bootcamp or HITT, gone are the days of loyally sweating it out on the running machine in your boyfriends old t-shirt. With achingly cool interiors, juice bars, designer workout wear, and equally designer class prices to match, these spaces are the place to see and be seen.
Kobox is one of the latest offerings from the school of cool classes. Offering high intensity boxing-based workouts in a bespoke studio setting, it combines heavy bag boxing routines with functional strength training. The vibe is very ‘Fight Club meets night club’, with low lighting, industrial fittings and pumping music-aplenty. Each class – you can choose from upper body, lower body or full body – lasts for 50 minutes and we opt for lower body.
The idea is that you start the class with either ‘bag work’ or ‘strength training’, but then swap places after each round. After a quick warm-up we start with the bag. Kobox uses a clever ‘punch by numbers’ approach to help with tricky boxing combinations. From 1 up to 6, each number corresponds to a different punch, which is projected onto the wall forming various sequences. Tentative at first, we soon get into our stride and enjoy the satisfying, and almost therapeutic, sensation of pummelling the bag. We then swap to the ‘floor’, which comprises of rigorous strength training and HITT exercises – think body weight, resistance bands and free weights. Club music blares in the darkened room as our trainer yells instructions. Everyone is in the zone and giving it their all. There is no sign of self-conscious or comparative glances – the effect is intoxicating yet surprisingly liberating.
We leave the class sweaty yet exhilarated, knowing we had channeled a weeks’ frustrations into the swinging punch bag. The perfect endorphin therapy for stressed, busy city-dwellers.
85 London Wall, EC2M 7AD; 020 7628 9688; koboxlondon.com