In addition to keeping fit, a big plus of joining a gym, dance class or fitness group in Madrid is getting to meet people – I honestly can’t recommend a better way to make friends in the city, especially if you’re no longer at university. And if you’re only passing through Madrid for a short while, I still recommend dropping in on a dance class or going for an organized hike or bike ride, as a non-conventional way to get a feel for the city.
The best place to find out about group fitness activities is through meetup.com. And if you want to go cycling, running or swimming, check out our previous posts: Cycling in Madrid: A beginner’s guide, Exercise opportunities in Madrid and Where to swim in winter in Madrid.
Now, here’s a guide to Madrid’s best gyms, dance and fitness clubs.
Before signing up, we recommend taking a look at a few different gyms (they usually offer a free trial), considering which one is closest to your home, work or university, and trying to get a long-term contract (careful with this one, make sure you really like the place before you sign up).
Madrid has three types of gyms and studios:
- (A) Public
- (B) Private (including dance & yoga studios)
- (C) Big Chains
Here are a few examples of our favorite places to keep fit, as well as useful links to find out about other options:
A) Public GYMS
1. Casa de Campo’s public gym has one of the best facilities in the city, especially for its swimming pools (winter and summer), which make this place perfect for pool lovers.
- Official Madrid Site
- Address: Pase Puerta del Angel, 7 (metros: Lago, Puerta del Ángel)
2. Another great swimming pool can be found in the heart of Chueca, at a public gym called Centro Deportivo Municipal Escuelas de San Antón. Although this gym is small and does not have fitness classes, its glass-covered indoor pool is gigantic and the neighbourhood is unbeatable!
- Official Madrid Site
- Address: c/ Farmacia, 13 (metros: Chueca/Tribunal/Alonso Martínez/Gran Vía)
Madrid public GYM full list (in Spanish).
B) Private GYMS, fitness clubs & groups. For something special
These private gyms are for those seeking something different, a friendly ambience and not-your-average fitness class. Here are my top three private gyms in Madrid, plus our recommended dance and yoga studios, and fun fitness groups.
1. Club Deportivo Metropolitano. This one is really convenient for those who live close to Complutense University, as it has a huge variety of activities such as martial arts, boxing, capoeira, wall climbing, pilates, yoga, a pool and much, much more.
- Facilities: swimming pool, weight and fitness room, pilates & yoga room, martial arts room, boxing ring, climbing wall
- Address: Calle Aravaca, 7 (Metro: Guzmán el Bueno)
2. Centro el Horno. My favourite spot in the city, “The Oven” is both a full dance studio and gym. At Centro el Horno, you will find every type of dance class under the sun, for both professionals and amateurs who just want to have fun in Madrid. Please stop by the acrobatics class, it will make your day! There’s also pole dancing, zumba, classical ballet, flamenco, crossfit, contemporary, hip-hop, you name it.
3. CrossFit Krig. I came here once and, literally, I couldn’t move my body after one session. You have to be really tough to keep going here. There is no gym in CrossFit Krig, instead you will find the most hardcore sports center–they only offer CrossFit, straight-up.
- Address: two locations:
- Cuatro Caminos: Calle Guipuzcoa, 11 (Metro: Cuatro Caminos)
- Retiro: Calle Vicente Caballero, 10 (Metro: O’Donnell or Sainz de Baranda)
*Another gym recommended to me by others is Soho Studio, great for cross-fit, pilates and all that, near metro Bilbao.
Recommended Dance Studios:
1. El Horno, for all dance styles (mentioned above)
- Although dance classes at El Horno are almost always open levels, meaning it’s hard to find an advanced class, you’ll find an amazing quantity of dance styles here and wonderful teachers. This is our favorite dance studio by far. Here you can really delve into new activities, from pole dancing and acrobatics, to classical ballet or hip hop.
2. Amor de Dios, for the best flamenco dance classes
- Want to take a flamenco class in a studio that actually smells like flamenco? Well, this is your place! As you step inside the dance studio, which is situated atop a fish market, you will immediately feel the authentic flamenco vibe. It’s the real deal.
- If you’re looking for high quality ballet, jazz, modern or contemporary dance classes, try either of these two studios, both of which offer a young professionals program and top instructors.
Recommended Yoga Studios:
Madrid is full of yoga and pilates studios, thus finding the right one for you can be tricky. Luckily, most yoga studios offer a free first class or inexpensive trial week, so don’t be afraid to drop in on a few different classes before picking your studio:
- For Yoga outdoors:
- Yoga at Retiro Park has become very popular, and isn’t limited to vinyasa. You can also find acroyoga and more. Check out the link.
- For Bikram Yoga, you can go to:
- For Ashtanga Yoga:
- Yoga at Espiritu 23: For a very inexpensive and good quality yoga class, you can go to a cultural center in Malasaña called Espíritu 23
Recommended Fitness Clubs & Groups:
If you’re not into the standard kind of workout, not to worry. You can join running groups in Retiro, weekend hiking groups to Madrid’s mountains and even go rock climbing in the outskirts. The best place to find out about fun fitness groups is at Meetup.com (make sure to look under all the different categories: health & well-being, fitness, sports & recreation, and dance). Here you can find long-boarding, salsa classes, yoga, everything!
Here are two clubs that I’ve heard particularly good things about, being great ways to get to know new people and the city:
1. Running Company Madrid:
2. Skating (Roller Blading)
C) Big chains
As in any other city, you will find some of the big GYM chains. I personally don’t find them to be that cool, but they do have great prices and some have swimming pools and passes that allow you access to various locations around the city. Here is a list of them:
- Holiday Gym
- Body Factory
- Centro Wellness (the Manuel Becerra location has a huge pool)