t turns out that kicking a bag until your shin is red raw is one of the most energising ways to spend a lunch break in Euston. For the past eight months, Flykick – buried deep in the heart of Regent’s Place – has been offering the opportunity to do just that, through their unique kickboxing-inspired group fitness class.
Each session lasts 50 minutes and comprises six different elements in timed interval bursts: there’s fat burning, sit-ups, stretching and, of course, long stints of bag-whacking. They also offer a little induction at the beginning for newbies, so myself and a couple of other kick-boxing virgins got a quick tutorial on how to throw an uppercut without dislocating a wrist.
The intervals make the class approachable, and the music, neon lights and friendly instructors make it a fun, energising break from the day’s routine. Each class is facilitated by a pair of tutors, who help when required and leave you to it when you’re on a side-kicking roll.
It was my first visit and – I suddenly thought midway through – there’s something really empowering about standing in formation with a group of strangers (lots of them female), mastering boxing techniques or simply exerting excess energy. The room is dark, and everyone is very involved in their own bag, which means that there are no egos involved if you’re a jujitsu queen –and no shame induced if your right hook’s got the same sting as your ten-year-old cousin’s.
No shoes are allowed in the studio, just wraps, gloves and minimal sports clothing; after about five minutes inside, everyone is sodden. That said, there’s no need to worry about returning to the office with a drowned rat sheen: they’ve got swish sandalwood shampoo and conditioner waiting in the shower rooms.
This is the first Flykick the world has ever known and the place’s popularity has soared in a matter of months. There are classes in the morning, noon and night. After my lunchtime session the other week I was positively bounding around the office all afternoon. Granted, the next morning was a little more of a crawl: lots of dormant muscles seeking revenge after I’d let them slumber for years. Here’s hoping they’re more on the ball at next week’s class.
Main image: Tom Joy