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Six alternative gym classes to inspire your inner Olympian

Polly Bartlett

With the Rio Olympics drawing to a close and Team GB sitting pretty in second place in the medals table, talk of team pursuits and twisting-double-backflips might’ve convinced you to skip Legs Bums and Tums and have a go at something new. Whether you fancy yourself as a Trott or a Farah, there’s no better time to step off the treadmill and try your hand at one of London's Olympics-inspired classes.


Day 2 and still smiling 😊 #rowing #aviron #trainingcamp #flatwater

A photo posted by Putney Town RC (@putneytownrc) on


Putney Rowing Club's 'Learn2Row' programme is a popular choice among social butterflies who revel in a team atmosphere. This six-week course involves learning the basics of handling rowing equipment and establishing a strong technique, and with two of the Team GB rowers in Rio starting their careers at Putney, who's to say Tokyo 2020 is just a pipe dream...


Improve your flexibility, strength and pick up some badass tumbling skills at East London Gymnastics Centre (Beckton DLR). Coached classes cater to all abilities and will arm you with an enviable set of party tricks for £10 per session (£12 for non-members).

Charlton lido


Eke out the last days of summer weather at recently refurbished Charlton Lido. Following a £2 million injection in 2013, Charlton’s 50-metre, fully heated pool is open to the public and also offers ‘swim doctor’ classes for those looking to improve their technique. Did we mention it’s fully heated?


Olympic wannabe never gonnabe #leevalleyvelopark #trackcycling #teamgb

A photo posted by Andrew Poole (@andypoole15) on


Where better to get the real-life Olympic experience than at the home of London 2012 track cycling? Lee Valley’s VeloPark (Stratford Underground) offers a one-hour taster session at the Olympic Park, which teaches the basic skills of riding a fixed bike while circling the velodrome like the pros.


A photo posted by Will To Win (@willtowinofficial) on


Make your serves as ace as Andy Murray's within the leafy surroundings of Hyde, Regents and Greenwich Parks. Drop in sessions at Will to Win Tennis range from £13.50 cardio-based sessions, to £17.50 for a more technique-focussed workout. 

Beach volleyball

With courts in ten different locations across London, London Beach Volleyball Club is a great way to feel the sand in your toes without setting foot out of the city. Seasonal membership costs £40 with a further £6 per session to attend the beginners' class. Speedos not obligatory...

Check out the last few screenings of the Rio Olympics at these spots in town.

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