Bodycombat in Dubai

We try Fidelity Fitness's new branch in JBR

The gym

Fidelity Fitness’s second branch opened at the beginning of February, and is kitted out with the latest Technogym machines – it’s so state of the art, you can even check Facebook or watch YouTube while you’re on the treadmill. It has a larger free-weights room than its older sister in JLT, and a new schedule of studio classes.

The promise

I’m here to try a Bodycombat class, a Les Mills-created, high-intensity martial arts-inspired cardio class that claims to have the potential to burn around 737 calories in one 55-minute session. I’m only joining in for half an hour, but I calculate that’s long enough to earn me an early-morning flapjack.

Step by step

I’m first given a quick tour of the facilities, during which operations manager Diana Gaskell explains how the air is expertly filtered to eliminate any bugs, and the water used in the showers is actually drinking water. I’m then led to the spacious main studio. There are only a handful of people in the class, which means, as Bodycombat instructor Brian says, there’s nowhere to hide. It’s the first time I’ve tried the class and, as with other Les Mills classes, everything is done to super-fast, super-loud dance music. With hardly any warning, we’re soon launching into a series of ever-faster right hooks, left hooks, upper cuts, shuffles and different kicks – which I both fail to remember the names of or master without a wobble. Halfway through the session, my thighs are aching and my face is redder than a baboon’s backside.

The results

Even though I’ve only done half the class, it feels like a good workout and far more effective than a 30-minute jog around the park. It’s impossible to tell whether I’ve burned the suggested amount of calories, although I can certainly feel the burn.


• Perfect for those who hate sitting still (you’ll certainly fancy slowing down for a few hours afterwards).
• Instructor Brian is encouraging and works harder than everyone else, which is a great motivation.


• There’s little focus on technique. This is a cardio workout, so don’t expect an in-depth martial arts class.

Also try...

Visit this MMA centre for pure boxing sessions with Usman on Fridays.
Dhs348 annual membership with unlimited classes. Fri 6.30pm. MMA Fitness Centre, TECOM (04 367 5077).
Try this Brazilian martial art, incorporating dance and music.
Dhs100 per class. Sat 3pm. The Fridge, Al Quoz (04 347 7793).

Urban Kick
A high-energy Thai kickboxing session focusing on technique.
Dhs85 per session. Mon 7.30pm, Al Barsha Park; Tue 8.30am, Umm Suqeim Park. Urban Energy Fitness (055 369 5664).


Annual membership at Fidelity Fitness Centre from Dhs299 per month, including unlimited classes. SPECIAL OFFER The first five readers to contact Fidelity Fitness quoting ‘Time Out’ will get a pair of passes to a Bodycombat class.
Al Fattan Tower, JBR (04 392 8121).

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