London’s top trainers on the secrets to a better workout

Barry's Bootcamp

London is home to some of the top fitness studios in the world, and with the average class in Central London running around £20 – or more – it’s not cheap. So how do you maximise that experience? DOSE talked with some of the best instructors in London to find out what some of the secrets are for creating a better experience. Whatever your favourite workout is, we’ve identified recommendations to help take your class to the next level, starting now…

Sarah Reid, Trainer at Barry’s Bootcamp

“As with the tortoise and the hare, speeding actually slows you down,” explains Sarah Reid, trainer at Barry’s Bootcamp. “There’s a time and a place for quick, fast-paced movements but if you’re doing hundreds of chest presses with light weights and not feeling anything, you’re not going to get much out of it. Lift heavier, move slower and focus on form rather than ‘repping it out.’ If you need to take a break from time to time, great – you’re probably holding weights that challenge you.”


Keeley Dann, Dancer, The Factory Fitness & Dance Centre

“One of things I always preach is to not get so hung up on getting the choreography right. We can get frustrated or judge ourselves if we can’t do it and for me it’s about feeling the music and dancing with joy and passion rather than needing to get it right,” confides dancer Keeley Dann, who teaches at the Factory. “Dancing isn’t just about getting the steps. It’s a way to let go and express yourself. Focus on that and the moves will come.”


Melissa Weldon, Master Trainer, Sweat It

“Be wary of negative self-dialogue. People often talk themselves out of progression in class by convincing themselves they are too tired or aren’t strong enough or fit enough, so they stick to the levels they are used to,” says Melissa Weldon, Sweat It London! Mastertrainer. “Talk to yourself how you would talk to your best friend if he or she was struggling; like “Hey hello bitch! Don’t be sad; you’ve got this! Keep going!”


Sarah White, Head of Barre at Heartcore

“With Barre, don’t assume it’s only good if you have a ballet interest or background. Some of my most hardcore clients are male and they say that it’s the toughest workout they do,” points out Sarah White, Head of Barre, Heartcore. “If you focus and practice regularly, the continuous flow of Barre’s full body movements with ‘micromovements’ help you strengthen, lengthen and tone the body.”

Kelly Wooton, Pilates at East London Pilates & Soho House

“My advice never changes,” admits Kelly Wooton, who teaches at East London Pilates and Soho House. “Always, always focus on the feeling rather than the movement. For instance, if you are lying supine in a hip hinge leg lift, just forget about the legs you are lifting and lowering and instead focus on the position of the pelvis and contraction of your core/pelvic stability muscles. That focus on where you’re working rather than what you’re doing is how you get the most benefit from the workout.”


Paola Carreno, Master trainer at Digme Fitness

“Don’t be afraid to just come and do what you can do. Many people, especially beginners, are scared or ashamed that they won’t be able to work like the rest of the people in the class and also that they might pass out halfway through the class,” says Paola Carreno, Master Trainer at Digme Fitness. “Don’t overthink it. No one is checking how much resistance you have. You’re in control all the way through, so it’s ok to take it easy and then push when you’re feeling ready.”


Adam Husler, Yoga teacher, Triyoga & Equinox

“So often, in the quest to create an impressive ‘shape’, the pose and its benefits are completely lost,” explains Adam Husler, who runs regular yoga retreats in addition to classes at Triyoga and Equinox. So how do you get through that urge to pose rather than flow, then? “My advice is integrity over depth, in this subjective practice.”


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Hettie is the editor and co-founder of DOSE. A keen runner, she’s also partial to a blast of high-intensity and hot yoga. A country girl at heart, she divides her time between London and the lush rolling hills of North Devon. When she’s not jetting off on her next adventure, Hettie can be found in a candle-lit alcove with a laptop, a spaniel and a full bodied Malbec.

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