Five Abu Dhabi gyms to check out in 2019

Here are nine places to work out in the capital

Five Abu Dhabi gyms to check out in 2019

Whether you’re looking to get a beach body or simply can’t face going outside to work out, Abu Dhabi’s gyms are waiting for you. Beyond the standardised hotel gyms there’s a broad spectrum of stand-alone facilities ready to help you raise your fitness levels to whatever you’re looking to achieve.

Arena Fitness
If you thought CrossFit was just a fad, think again. Though it’s had its critics over the years, the multi-discipline fitness regime has a proven track record of producing dramatic results. If you fancy going bigger, or even edging towards competitions, then Arena Fitness also has an Olympic weightlifting course. It’s difficult to say when it’ll be hardest to keep a straight face – when you’re raising your own bodyweight above your head or when the team tell you their goal is to “awaken the athlete within”.
Open daily 5.30am-8pm. Al Zeina, Al Raha Beach (02 552 9002).

California Gym
So new that its website still has a little “lorem ipsum” on it, the California Gym has probably made these forgivable errors on account of how little sleep they’re getting. Open 20 hours most days, it offers classes, personal trainers and the chance to work up a sweat, no matter what your schedule is.
Open Sat-Thu 5am-1am; Fri 4pm-10pm. Opposite Choithrams, Khalidiya Street (055 999 4474).

Cobra Fitness
As their T-shirts might say: “You don’t have to want to punch anyone in the face to train here, but it probably helps”. With combat-based exercises ranging from kickboxing to MMA to traditional pugilism, you can train at the Cobra with a view to simply getting fitter or to one day stepping inside a ring and landing blows for real.
Open Sun-Thu 6am-10pm; Fri-Sat 7am-11am. Al Bandar (02 449 6524).

F45 Fitness
Brand new in Zayed Sports City, F45 has been around the block a few times – sprinting and lifting weights at the same time. Breaking their training down into (brutal) 45-minute sessions may sound like a masochist’s idea of a workout, but their formula has worked in almost 40 countries around the world. With the training focus shifting every week, their approach will take you to places you’ve never been before, not all of them entirely fun.
Various times. Zayed Sports City (056 332 3113).

Gold’s Gym
One of the most famous names in fitness, Gold’s has built a global network of gyms, branded gear and celebrity endorsement – quite the achievement for what was originally just a single unit in Venice Beach, California. Underlining how popular they are, there are three facilities in Abu Dhabi alone, and while some may be older than others, you can expect a solid selection of machines, weights, classes and nutritional advice.
There are mixed and ladies’ only venues, too.
Various times and locations, including Deerfields Mall.

Haddins Fitness

There are no prizes for guessing that the mighty Zayed Sports City is home to a couple of outstanding gyms, including Haddins. One of Abu Dhabi’s most popular fitness establishments, this isn’t for the faint-hearted; if you aren’t willing to put the work into your workout then perhaps look for something a little gentler. If this facility is not near you,  then know that there’s a new, outdoor one on the Corniche.
Open Sun-Thu 5am-9.30pm; Fri 8.30am-12.30pm; Sat 2pm-6pm. Zayed Sports City (02 403 4233).

My First Gym
Want your toddler to get, like, totally ripped, bro? Then you should probably have a long, hard think about yourself. But, if you want your little one to at least be a tiny bit active, then My First Gym is place to go. Just remember to take a rusk off them every time they skip leg day. Probably more popular than their wee-one workouts are the sessions designed for new mums that aim to help you get back into shape after the joys of childbirth.
Open Sun-Thu 8.30pm-9pm; Fri-Sat 8.30am-7pm. Delma Street, Downtown Abu Dhabi (02 679 0299).

Powerhouse Gym
Boasting the “most extensive range of fitness equipment in the UAE” the Powerhouse Gym is found out at the Abu Dhabi Country Club. With over 600 sqm dedicated to better health, it actually has two gyms (one is ladies only) as well as a small army of personal trainers ready to whip you into shape. Country clubs may have a stuffy reputation, but if you come out of here, with veins pulsing from your biceps, no one will make fun of your tank top.
Open daily 5.30am-midnight. Abu Dhabi Country Club, Mushrif (02 657 7777).

The Body Company
It might sound like a series of experiments from the 1930s, but Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS) is taken pretty seriously by the trainers here. They make the claim that their tech can help you get fit in 20 minutes, with 90 percent of your body’s muscles being engaged during the session. Does it work? You’ll only find out by trying.
Open Sat-Thu 10.30am-8pm. International Tower, Al Karamah Street (056 334 2286).

NYU Abu Dhabi Fitness Center

If you don’t know that NYU stands for New York University, then the spelling of centre is a hint that this Saadiyat Island institution is American. Keen to stimulate bodies as well minds, the campus gym is available to sue for all students. Classes range from yoga to boxing, Zumba to circuit training. There are also courses based on nutrition and female-only classes.
Open Sat-Wed 8am-10pm; Thu 8am-6pm, Fri 2pm-10pm. NYU Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Island.

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