When it comes to fitness, we Londoners are pretty spoilt. From Spin and climbing to barre and SUP Yoga, you could (budget and time-permitting, of course) probably take part in a different fitness class every single day of the year. So, when someone who has been around a bit hears of something new landing in London, you want to know what makes it stand out from the rest. Enter Digme’s – yes, that Digme Spin Studio that I wrote about last year – new Matrix class at their new studio in Blackfriars Station. And when I say in Blackfriars Station, I mean up the escalator, next to Platform 2, by the Costa Coffee. It’s a bit tucked away from the main part of the station.
Rewind: A bit about Digme
Just in case you’ve not heard of Digme, it’s a spinning studio with an edge. As in you become a part of a virtual cycling race on screen behind the instructor. They set up the route and decide whether you’ll be challenged with sprints, or hills, and then instruct you accordingly. It’s then up to you to keep ahead of the pack. Your stats are all determined by your weight, sex and other info that you fill in before the class, so the information at the end of the class is more accurate. What’s more, it really suits those of us who are fiercely competitive. Personally, I enjoy it because it pushes me to go harder than other cycle classes and I also like to be at the top of the leaderboard.
Since opening in Richmond, London, last year, Digme has spread its wings and you can now try their spin classes in Oxford, Moorgate and at the new Blackfriars Studio.
And press play: for Matrix
So what is Matrix? Digme has branched out more recently by offering a new type of HIIT-style class that is along the same lines at Barry’s Bootcamp or Best’s Bootcamp. Broken down in the purest form, they split the 50-minute session into three different sections: Run. Condition. Move.
I, for one, am not a huge fan of treadmills. Nevertheless, they can be a great tool for runners. Only recently, a well-known mountain athlete was telling me how certain athletes use treadmills rather than running on the road as they are more absorbant than tarmac. This means you are less likely to suffer from injuries. You can also adjust the height accordingly and get a really measured workout. I’m not a fan of treadmills because I don’t like relying on the machine for speed. I want to set my own pace gradually. And this is why Digme’s Run part of Matrix is appealing. For they are the first studio to use Technogym’s SkillMills – a curve treadmill powered by your legs, which works on your technique by encouraging a forefoot strike and improvements to your posture.
Condition those muscles
Cardio is all very well but to truly get stronger, you need to keep those muscles in tip-top condition. By using TRX and kettlebells, Matrix helps to target those parts of the body that need attention during the Condition part of the session. These are some of the best pieces of equipment in terms of building and strengthening muscles but you have to know how to use them correctly, or you could injure yourself. The good thing about Digme is that the instructor constantly checks to ensure you are moving in the right way.
As you can imagine, the Move part of Matrix, is all about agility and those dynamic, plyometric moves such as spiderman press-ups, cobras and essentially all the moves that get your huffing and puffing by using your own body weight.
And then comes the Dig.
Once you’ve been through the rounds of the above (usually each round will take about 4 minutes), the class will be given a challenge such as one minute of bear walks together. Before you head out feeling good, challenged and ready for your day ahead.
Should you Dig-it?
Digme is worth a try anyway if you’re looking to mix up your spin sessions. But the Matrix classes add an extra dimension for anyone who runs or cycles regularly. It’s more fun than going it alone in the gym and will help you build those muscles so often neglected (we talking about core and strength).
It’s competitively priced at the moment, with some excellent opening offers. So, whether you’re heading away this summer or not, or simply want to shake up your workout, try Digme Matrix currently available at the Oxord and Blackfriars studios.
To find out more, go to: https://www.digmefitness.com/
I was invited to try out the new studio at Blackfriars. As well as a sweat-inducing class, they also had fancy Dyson hairdryers…