THE BASICS: 1 Rebel has arrived. Choose one of two ways to do a group work out- Ride or Reshape. Ride is a 50+ person studio, Reshape is a large “bootcamp” style circuits in a basement, which reminded me of Barry’s Bootcamp, but less “American”.
No contracts, No BS, classes from 6am through to 9pm. You feel like you’ve been allowed into the world of the Beautiful People when you enter, and you are made to feel like you belong there too! Industrial, metal, lights, amazing music, very, very sexy. Roots and Bulbs supply the juice bar. The bar makes you think you need juice, even if you aren’t even thirsty.
THE BITCHES: Alix (founder of Voopy) and Carly
THE CLASS: Yes- 1Rebel has arrived in London, and although I didn’t get a place at their Ride at the top of the Gerkin to launch, I was lucky enough to get down for their first night. We were the last ride of the day, and it was all a bit overwhelming to begin with- founders, managers, reception hosts, new people, sweaty people, lights, industrial… the place is beautiful and it was buzzing.
Clip on shoes (“cleats”) were available for free- just find your size on the bench, pop your trainers in, and their shoes out. Locker rooms are downstairs (as is the Reshape studio) and they are huge and stylish. Heated benches make it nigh on impossible not to contemplate a little nap (but you’re not here to sleep!! You’re here to sweat! Get the hell up!) Lockers are spacious although check how to use them first- you set the code as you lock.
Around 10 showers- they don’t have a door but they’re structured so you have privacy! Apparently they have amazing products to use- I can’t verify as I am a dirty bugger who lives close to the studio, so I left 1Rebel sweaty and showered when I got home!
The last class of the night had a small but determined group of us- seems like we’d missed the throng of the earlier class. It didn’t matter- the studio is colossal and the music choice and mix was, honestly, superb. Less mainstream and more club-like (in my class anyway) but at one point I found myself staring at the wall in front, cycling like it was my last cycle on earth. To say I was in the zone was an understatement.
The classes are held to the beat of the music, and the bikes were incredibly smooth so even standing and cycling really really fast was possible without drag or gravity slowing you down. Can’t account for your legs slowing you down but that’s another matter….ha! Anyway- I was seriously impressed with how smooth the bikes were.
Our teacher Tiago kept saying “C’MON you little REBELS!!!” and “Ride like a ROCKSTAR” which fitted the mood we were all in and was motivational. Impressively- and as all really good indoor bike teachers should- he did the entire class with us at the same intensity, only pausing briefly to jump off his bike and come round to high five us and psych us up in front of our bikes. He was very bought into the class and our success!
We were dripping with sweat after the class, but feeling pretty pumped. Another look around the lovely changing rooms, a sit down on the heated benches, used shoes and (free) towels in their laundry bags, and we just had time for a quick photo with Tiago to prove we actually survived the class (both saying “EW! Sweaty!!” when we put our arms round each other to pose, paha!) before Alix and I stumbled out into the night, wondering what the effing hell had just happened to us.
THE VERDICT: Very, very good. Bikes, music, look, feel, atmosphere. If it keeps this up, then it’s a real contender for the crown of indoor riding in London.
THE EXTRAS: Back again for seconds 2 days later for a class with Melissa. Couldn’t help myself! My bum cheeks hurt in a way I honestly cannot describe.