You only have to scan the number of gyms and sporting venues in the UAE to see that people in the country take their health and fitness seriously.
As the amount of centres and classes have increased over the past few years, there’s also been a rise in studios dedicated to women.
So whether you're thinking of picking up the pace for Dubai Fitness Challenge, which begins on October 29, or getting fit in the company of like-minded ladies, here are some venues that should be on your radar.
The newest venue to join Dubai’s line-up of women-only centres, FitnGlam opened in Al Quoz on October 4 and offers a lot to be impressed about. The warehouse-style 2,040-square-metre super-club is set over two floors and features four fitness studios designed to host classes such as HIIT, spin, barre and yoga. The space also houses a CrossFit area, a boxing ring, and machines for body analysis and fitness progress tracking. After you’re done with your workout, you can stop by its healthy cafe, Active x Nolu’s, for a pick-me-up, or try the recovery room for water massage relaxation beds, sauna and steam rooms or electrical muscle stimulation training. There’s a consultation room, so members can access coaching, nutrition and health advice on topics such as prenatal and postnatal training. It might only have opened recently, but the “Instagrammable” gym space already has big expansion plans, with branches scheduled to open in Dubai Hills and at Sport Society in Mirdif, in the next six months.
Open daily; 6am-10pm; daily pass costs Dh100 and can be used for a class or the gym, monthly memberships from Dh469 per month; Al Quoz; fitnglam.ae
In Shape Ladies Fitness Club
Established in 2009, In Shape offers a fully equipped gym and studio space, as well as free Wi-Fi, showers and lockers. It specialises in personal training sessions and offers a number of personalised programmes such as Fit over 50 and Back on Track. While you can head to this space for a workout in a safe and friendly environment, or book a one-on-one session, it’s currently not offering group classes owing to the pandemic.
Saturday to Thursday; 7.30am-9pm; memberships from Dh1,050 for three months; Al Joud Centre, Sheikh Zayed Road; inshapeme.com
Dubai Ladies Club
A great venue for overall health and wellness, the Dubai Ladies Club offers a little bit of everything. There’s a fully equipped gym, two open-air swimming pools, private beach access, outdoor jogging tracks, and tennis and squash courts. After a vigorous workout, women can cool down at Al Asalla spa or indulge at the Remaliya Cafe within.
Open daily; 7am-10pm; about Dh2,000 for unlimited monthly access, along with a 20 per cent discount for those fully vaccinated; Jumeirah Beach Road; dubailadiesclub.com
Curvalicious Ladies Boutique Fitness
This boutique fitness centre doesn’t have a designated gym area, but a series of classes including weightlifting, callisthenics, bodybuilding, yoga and Pilates, instead. It specialises in three signature strength training classes – Bootylicious, Upperlicious and Bodylicious. You might not find too much equipment at this fitness studio, but there’s a focus on personal training in a group setting. Class times vary according to month, but are usually from 3pm, with morning classes on select days of the week.
Saturday to Thursday; times vary; Dh1,260 per month for a monthly membership including assessment; Nadd Al Hamar; curvalicious.fit
Motion Ladies Fitness Centre
Tucked away in Umm Suqeim, the studio is in a converted villa with a garden for outdoor sessions. The boutique fitness centre doesn’t have a designated gym area, but it offers a number of classes, from general fitness and cardio to barre and Pilates, with expert trainers.
Class schedule changes each month; 7am-9pm; from Dh130 for a class or Dh1,200 for 10 classes over three months; Umm Suqeim; motionfitnesscenter.com
Fitness 360, J3 Mall
Apart from state-of-the-art equipment, this ladies-only venue has group classes for Zumba, TRX, BodyPump, kickboxing, Pilates and spinning throughout the day. After you’re done, you can relax in the members' lounge or steam room, while the proximity to the mall ensures there are plenty of restaurants nearby, too.
Open daily; Dh449 for a one-month membership, additional packages and promotions available; Al Wasl Road; fitness360.me
FitHub Women by Bam Sports
It hasn't opened yet, but this venue located in Dubai’s Al Mizhar area is set to be a game changer. FitHub Women by Bam Sports spans 3,345 square metres and is an all-encompassing space for health, wellness and fitness. As well as offering a mixed bag of workout classes – including HIIT, yoga, cycling, CrossFit and Pilates – the centre also has a dedicated state-of-the-art Aqua Hub, which offers water-based fitness activities in an eight-lane Olympic-size swimming pool. Meanwhile, there’s a beauty corner, where women can choose between a variety of spa treatments, hair and nail services, and a luxury boutique with athleisure and high fashion apparel for some retail therapy. Finally, if you’ve worked up an appetite after all that exercising, you can pick up dishes from ProteinHouse, the American franchise known for its lean bowls, protein burgers and hormone-free produce.
Open daily; 10am-6pm; from Dh150 for a day pass, Dh800 for a monthly pass; Al Mizhar; fithub.ae
Fitness First Marina Mall and Al Seef Mall
This citywide fitness chain is sure to meet all your basic health and wellness goals, and its Marina Mall and Al Seef Mall branches are for ladies only. There are exercise machines, free weights, group classes and personal training sessions. Those joining the Al Seef Mall branch have the added benefit of an outdoor swimming pool to get in some laps.
Open daily; Marina Mall and Al Seef Mall; Dh349 per month for platinum membership; uae.fitnessfirstme.com
Located in two detached villas, this health and wellness venue offers a little bit of everything. There’s a gym area with a selection of equipment and weights, while two fitness studios are used for group classes. Some of the programmes on offer include ballet, dance fitness, indoor cycling, Pilates, yoga and personal training. There’s also a beauty salon, if you want to spruce up afterwards.
Open daily; 8am-10pm; from Dh60 for a single class and Dh600 for a gym package; Al Mushrif, Abu Dhabi; inspiresports.ae
Vibez Fitness Centre & Spa
If you’re looking to challenge yourself, Vibez Fitness Centre & Spa offers a wide range of classes that are as fun as they are unique – with sessions such as swing yoga, Bollywood dance fitness and trampoline jump fit. The facilities comprise a fully equipped gym, two fitness studios, lockers and shower facilities, complete with a steam room, sauna and Jacuzzi.
Open daily; times vary; Dh682.50 for a monthly membership; Al Mushrif; 02 443 3077
Contour Fitness Studio
It doesn’t have a dedicated gym area, but Contour Fitness Studio distinguishes itself with a range of group classes in a chic, well-lit space. Guests can choose anything from high-intensity classes such as Body Attack by Les Mills to soothing sessions of yoga. There are also group classes such as tone, bikini body, burn, body combat, Pilates and Zumba, with personal training sessions available, too.
Saturday to Thursday; 7.30am-9.30am; prices vary; Khalidiya; contourfitnessuae.com