13 at KOBOX: The New Boutique Pay-As-You Gym Studio

As a proud ambassador of KOBOX I'm very pleased to announce a new option to their work out schedule.

For anyone not wanting to be tied to a gym membership this is for you. For anyone fed-up with not being able to access their workout station due to overcrowding, this is for you.

At KOBOX 13 you have all the space and time to train how and when you like. It's festooned with all the trimmings you'd expect from a KOBOX gym. There's state-of-the-art equipment as well as a full size boxing ring as its centrepiece.

The concept is brilliant. I'm not claiming it's solely original or exclusive to KOBOX, you'll find others like Barry's offer a similar format. But Barry's have a PT that offers a pre-programmed schedule to around 40 people. KOBOX has more flexibility, you can work out at your leisure or have the KOBOX team organise your station before your arrival.

I had the option of having a programme put together for me by either Toby or Shane the trainers, targeted towards my body goals. It's a unique and holistic approach to working out.

This is the response I got from KOBOX when I booked a 13 Class.

“Hi Carl

Hope you are good? I see you’re booked in with a few space for a session with us tomorrow. If you need help planning what you want to do when you’re here then please let us know. We’d be happy to prepare a training plan that will make sure that you get the best out of your visit. Just let us know what you want, maybe you want to sweat, maybe you want to lift, maybe there is a specific body part you want to work on, or a sport you are training for. Let us know and we’ll have it ready when you arrive. 

If you want to come and just use the space yourself that’s also cool."

FINAL THOUGHTS

What I loved was the freedom it gave me. I felt like I owned the place. Very few people, easy access to all the equipment. It allowed me to focus on what I came to achieve. It's a perfect way to train if you're working out infrequently, maybe you're not in the City that often. Perhaps you just enjoy the freedom of space and don't want to hang around waiting for your station to free up.

It's located on the first floor of KOBOX's new flagship Chelsea studio - 107 King's Road, SW3 4PA

https://www.koboxboxingclub.com

Fighting Back Against Poor Oral Health

How guilty are we all when it comes to neglecting our oral hygiene? It's something I've been putting off for a while so was delighted when dentist Dr Saul Konviser at Dawood & Tanner General Dental Practice reached out to me and invited me in for a check-up and a chat.

The practice is located in the most central of locations and just down the road from the KOBOX on Baker Street. The location in the Montagu Mansions has a very 'homely feel'. 

After having a sit down talk with dentist Dr Saul Konviser, a young and enterprising gentleman, I started to feel pangs of guilt that I hadn't come to the realisation earlier. Poor oral health has larger ramifications than just poor teeth.

There are detrimental effects to your heart that can lead to respiratory disease. Not to mention that neglecting oral health can directly impact sporting performance, which was an instant red flag for me. 

I have been around fighters who had told me their diet is suffering terribly due to cracked teeth. Imagine training for a fight and having to eat through a straw because it's too painful to chew your food! 

Dawood & Tanner have come up with an innovative way of emphasising the importance of this issue; personalised mouth guards. It's such a novel idea and the prototypes that Dr Konviser showed me were fantastic. Incredibly unique. The gum shield is such a crucial part of the fighter's armoury, protecting not only the teeth but the jaw. 

Although I don't do any sparring at KOBOX, it's a place where fighters do come and train. Most are savvy enough not to get the entry level self-moulded guards. As well not offering offer inadequate support and protection, they can be super uncomfortable. 

I've invested in a mouth guard, not for fighting, (Hey I don't want to mess up the cash register at my age) but as I grind my teeth at night. A mouth guard for evening wear will be thinner than a gum shield, although created from the same mould. 

If you're interested in a mouthguard Dawood & Tanner offer a 1 week turnaround to reduce away time from training and competition. Let Saul know I sent you. You can find further articles on Dawood & Tanner online. If you're interested in teeth whitening my friend Peter Brooker has written a decent article on his blog. It stresses the importance of why you should leave teeth whitening to the professionals.

Why I'm Addicted to KOBOX and You Should be too

If you're following me on Instagram you'll know I've been hooked on KOBOX fitness classes for the best of 2018. It's truly been a revelation in my life and it's been great to see the brand grow and expand into different corners of London. 

There are currently 3 KOBOX studios you can find in London, Chelsea, City and Marylebone. They must be pumping up the music in the Baker Street studio to 11 because it feels louder and more energised than the rest! 

I'm sketching out some feel good thoughts today on why I love, neigh, why I'm addicted to KOBOX and why you should be too. 

Learn a new Skill 

Not only are you getting fit, you're learning something new. You're learning poise, balance, how to plant your feet and throw an effective punch. 

Sure you can just run on the treadmill every day and dream of that last holiday you were on. Here at KOBOX you get to develop your pugilistic skills as well as burn some calories. Win win. 

Stress reliever 

I don't think about anything else when I'm at KOBOX, other than my present environment. It just feels awesome parking all that mental crap outside for an hour or so. Ok so I might imagine the odd face or two when swinging at the heavy bag, but that's all part of the fun. 

Mental Health 

I touched on it, but I can't stress how important it is right now to expunge some of those demons. No better way to do it than to kick the crap out of a punch bag. It would be great to know some stats behind mental health and exercise. I'm positive that more people would look out on a brighter horizon if they were able to apply themselves physically. You know, release all them en-dolphins. (Sorry, not big on the science as you can tell). 

It's for everyone 

KOBOX is not prejudice when it comes to your boxing ability. Don't feel like you have to be Ivan Drago, or Ivan Drago's son (stoked for Creed 2 btw) to participate in a KOBOX class. The instructors are all there for you, to help you along no matter what level you're at. 

The Instructors 

Yeah, lets mention the instructors. They truly are awesome, with everyone. They make me feel like they want me there. You're made to feel like a community and when I visit a KOBOX studio, I feel like I'm dropping in on old friends. It has that close knit family vibe, two of the instructors got married this year. All the best to you Maciela and Ian.

Great for the kids

As Rocky says in Rocky 5, "You know Adrian, ain't nuttin' wrong with showing the kid, you know, some lethal punches'. They host a kids class, a great way for the children to expend all that run-around energy. Channel it into something decent and instil some discipline. 

Personal Confidence 

I'll finish here but I'm feeling a lot more confident in myself since starting these classes. I know the bag doesn't punch back, I know I'm not sparring or anything. But I'm feeling good that I can throw combinations, I can plant my feet, I can shift my weight. 

Knowing how to throw a punch or two, will ultimately lead to you having better self-esteem. Trust me, this is what KOBOX has done for me. 

The KOBOX Influencer Press Day | Boxing Fitness

Last week I had the distinct pleasure of attending and hosting an influencer work out at the KOBOX gym in Chelsea. Not only was it a privilege to be asked, and I got to see some familiar faces, (Anton Welcome from Maketh the Man, Edmond from Cuts for Him, naming a few) but it also gave me the chance to meet some of the good people of the Instagram community (the lethal Darren Branch and his lovely other half Helen) that I've been following avidly for the past few months. 

Influencers of the world unite! (Blows heavy sea shell like conch across the London skylines). By the way where are we at now with the term 'Influencer'? Are we Bloggers? Vloggers? Instagrammers? Content creators? Or just good old fashioned digital marketers? I feel like that statement requires a phone in and a cash giveaway! 

For those that have been living under a rock for the past couple of months, Kobox is a 50-minute, high intensity classes that will see you tackle all the fundamentals of boxing.

With two studios located conveniently in Chelsea and Liverpool Street, my best kept secret is now well and truly out. These guys are taking over. 

You may have also seen KOBOX in the news recently backing a recent PROUD campaign, encouraging gay men to pick up a pair of gloves and help smash away the current stigma attached to the sport.

At the end of the work out, which was brutal and possibly the most amped session I've had at KOBOX to date, (we're a competitive bunch) we all got to take away a Fitty London box.

Fitty are a no nonsense wellness brand that have developed signature boxes to help drive the health and wellness movement. Reportedly they turn down around 50% of products that want to feature in their. Their boxes are manufactured to be convenient, affordable and exciting in a way to discover the products to fuel and recover, fast. 

Book a session with KOBOX today, there are many instructors all with great energy, but I have to give a special shout to Ollie who put us all through our paces that day. 

KOBOX Boxing Club Launches PROUD Campaign

KOBOX Boxing Club has launched its PROUD campaign with Attitude – the UK’s best-selling gay magazine – encouraging gay men to pick up a pair of gloves and help smash away the current stigma attached to the sport. I've been very proud (pardon the pun) to represent KOBOX over these last few months as their ambassador for reasons just like these. 

Not only are they championing fitness, they're also unashamedly egalitarian in the way that they promote their brand. The people behind KOBOX know the true definition of community spirit.

In this campaign Kris Pace, brand director at KOBOX has addressed a glaring misnomer that boxing is a sport exclusive to straight men.  

'The lack of gay men participating in boxing, and boxing-related fitness, has needed to be addressed for some time now, and we felt this was a profound way to deliver a clear message to everyone within the sport.

We welcome anyone through our doors, from any walk of life, and the LGBT community is, without question, absolutely a part of that. On this occasion, after speaking to Attitude magazine and those closest to us, we wanted to start by challenging the perception that boxing is a sport predominantly for straight men in particular. But this is just the beginning...’  Kris Pace, brand director at KOBOX

Boxing clubs are, by some, still seen as hostile, intimidating environments to work out in. Many in the gay community rightly see boxing as an incredibly effective way to get fit, but many say they feel uneasy about trying their hand at it.

Has there never been any famous gay boxers? 

Yes there has, and perhaps more than you think. Emile Griffin is considered one of the greatest welterweight boxers of all time. He killed fellow fighter Benny Paret in the ring on March 24, 1962 and was famously quoted -  

They forgave me for killing a man, but they couldn’t forgive me for loving a man.” 

His bisexuality was only revealed after his boxing career; Orlando Cruz became the first boxer to come out during his professional career in 2012. 

It's amazing to think that we still live in a world where we need these kind of campaigns, but the sad truth of it all is we do. 

So what's the campaign about? 

In the run-up to London Pride in July, KOBOX Boxing Club launches its PROUD campaign with a hard-hitting video, showcasing the isolation and exclusion some gay men may feel when thinking about taking up the sport.

The video is filmed in its London City studio, displaying the visceral environment of KOBOX that runs on the mantra of Fight Club Meets Nightclub. Through the use of deliberate homophobic rhetoric, the film sensationalises the stigmatisation some gay men feel when thinking about getting into boxing.

The video doesn't pull its punches (ok that pun was intended) and has succeeded in delivering some of the underlying concerns and emotions, felt by many people in the gay community. 

No one should feel intimidated coming to a boxing class at KOBOX, or any other gym for that matter. Any perception that gay men aren’t welcome at a boxing club is outrageous.Kris Pace

A host of names feature in the video – which is led by creative director Jerry Reeve – including showbiz journalist James Ingham, TV producer Joff Powell and comedian and TV presenter James Barr.

 

Introducing KOBOX - Fightclub meets Night Club

If you've been following my Instagram stories of late you'll know I've procured a healthy obsession with KOBOX. Yes, I'm working on my bikini body for my upcoming trip to Tanzania, but square pecs and a six-pack aren't just for beach holidays and showy social posts (well some days they are). I've come to the slow realisation that fitness is a way of life. 

For many people joining a boxing gym can be extremely intimidating. Whilst it's nothing like the movies where a trainer asks you to jump in to the ring within seconds of you entering the gym and asks 'ok kid let’s see what you got', it means completely abandoning your comfort zone. 

One of the reasons I've become hooked on KOBOX of late is because there is an acute sense of community. It's ran like a family business and straight I was made to feel like one of the family. All the trainers and staff live and breathe the brand, and want every person who walks through the doors to feel as at home as they all do. 

What is KOBOX?

KOBOX, 50-minute, high intensity classes that will see you tackle all the fundamentals of boxing. Each class is structured in a series of boxing combinations, displayed in HD on the studio wall, making boxing easier than ever. The classes are boxing combined with HIIT training, think 3 minutes on a bag and 3 minutes HIIT...repeated. 

I started off by using these classes once per week just to mix it up a bit as variation in your fitness routine is important (or so I’ve heard!) Now I’m up to 4-5 classes a week and I’m feeling as fit as I’ve felt in such a long time. Each class focuses on a particular muscle group such as Upper Body, Lower Body, Core or a Full Body workout. 

The best part for me is that I can get a sweat on, throw some meaningful punches and not leave with any marks on the cash register (my face!). The music kicks ass and lends a fantastic pulse to the class. The lights dim, the beat drops and as someone at KOBOX has so aptly coined, 'It’s Fight Club Meets Nightclub'.

KOBOX has two London locations one in Chelsea and the other in the City. You simply sign up to koboxlondon.com and buy a pack of classes which you use to book your slot. The booking system is super easy to use and the classes structured with incredible staff. 

I'm now proud to announce I'm an ambassador for the brand and would love to hear from you on what your take on fitness is. Have you attended a KOBOX class and if so please leave some thoughts in the comments below. All feedback welcome. 

Getting Back to the Gym with Lean Active | Reviewed

Trying to stay fit and healthy over the winter months is something I've struggled with all of my life, along with pretty much every other 'normal' non #FitFam Londoner! Winter is party season, it's cold outside and it's just so easy to make excuses not to keep up with your fitness regime that we all had nailed in the summer. Well this year is different, I've booked myself up for a winter full of KOBOX classes as well as a monthly membership to British Military Fitness, which is outdoor high-intensity training plus I've still got my monthly membership to Virgin Active in Clapham Old Town. Yes I'm all or nothing when it comes to fitness and wellbeing! Wish me luck.

Booking all of these fitness classes is actually quite financially painful but doing it this way ensures that I'll make the most of them and keep my fitness goals up all through the cold months. To help me with my #gains I've invested in some new pre, during and post workout supplements from Lean Active. Lean are a brand that I found on Instagram, which seems to be the only way that I find new interesting products recently. I was initially drawn in by their flavours including a Cherry Cola pre-workout, my favourite fizzy drink of all time! However when digging into their products themselves they are more them just fantastic flavours. For my first order, I opted for the cherry cola pre-workout, the pineapple crush BCAA hydrate and the strawberry milkshake whey protein. 

Lean Active Cherry Cola Pre-Workout

Lean Active Lifted Focus is a pre workout powder that contains scientifically proven ingredients at optimum dosage levels and is able to provide an intense yet smooth energy boost capable of changing the way you work out.

  • Increases physical performance during high intensity exercise.
  • Helps to improve concentration and alertness for intense workouts.
  • Supports normal mental performance.
  • Stim Boost Pre Workout Drink - 200mg Caffeine per serving, plus 3,000mg Creatine per serving

Lean Active Pineapple Crush BCAA Hydrate

A truly refreshing BCAA powder blend designed to enhance endurance, performance and recovery.

  • Intra-workout formula provides 5g of BCAAs per serving.
  • Branched Chain Amino Acids also contains glutamine, coconut water and electrolytes.
  • Supports immune function during intense sport and exercise.

Lean Active Strawberry Milkshake Whey Protein

High protein recovery drink for increased muscle growth and formulated with high quality ultra-pure whey protein isolate.

  • Whey protein powder growth and recovery formula in three flavours - Chocolate Orange, Strawberry Milkshake & Vanilla Cream.
  • High protein - 24g protein per serving.
  • Low sugar - 0.8g per serving.