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Gyms for the body and soul

Life coaching: Projekt 42 in Edinburgh



With a focus on rowing-based classes, every workout at this new studio from Real Madrid star Gareth Bale will aim to support your mental health while putting you through your physical paces. Workouts devised by a team of Olympic medallists, athletes and mental-health professionals include motivational and mindfulness techniques. Take Action, for example, features powerful shorter rounds to help with goal-setting, while Mental Stamina is a more endurance-focused workout.

Projekt 42


This not-for-profit community gym combines physical training with mental-health services. Alongside classes such as boxing, hip-hop fitness, pilates and weight training, the gym can link you with counselling sessions. Life coaching and buddy group personal training are also available.



This new boutique gym asks you to focus inwards. Classes include Reset, a mixture of yoga, meditation, core strength and calisthenics, and Sunset, a hybrid of weighted, bodyweight, HIIT and yoga moves done in a heated room.


Various studios nationwide

With the focus on community and camaraderie, this chain of Aussie gyms is all about team spirit. Workouts offer a mixture of high-intensity interval training, circuit training and functional training, with an emphasis on supporting each other. There are no mirrors so you can focus on endorphins without worrying about how you look.

The Foundry


The Real deal: Gareth Bale’s Rowbots

These gyms offer a quarterly ‘emotional review’ and bring in counsellors for seminars. Co-founder Dave Thomas says: ‘We’ve had clients dropping 30kg to enable successful prostate cancer surgery and clients being referred by their employers after burnout — and coming out transformed.’

Kennedy’s Fitness

Aylsham, Norfolk

Having lost a friend to suicide and experienced depression, gym owner Olly Kimber was determined to create a studio that helped with mental health. Classes range from 9Round, a tough, high-intensity workout, to Serenity, a mixture of yoga, pilates and t’ai chi.