Part of embracing the demands of modern life means putting our overall wellbeing at the forefront. With so many things going on and a lot being asked of us on the daily, stress levels are bound to go up, which is why it’s increasingly crucial we take care of ourselves. One way of doing so is by keeping our bodies moving. Thankfully, we’re spoilt for choice in Klang Valley –– there’s no shortage of boutique gyms!

We get it, large gym chains offer more than one branch, but there’s just something appealing about boutique gyms. Maybe it’s the fact that they provide a specific type of workout suited to your personality, or the community is a supportive one that keeps you coming back for more. Whatever it is, boutique gyms are perfect for those who prefer a more intimate setting. Whether you’re a fitness enthusiast or just beginning your journey towards a healthier lifestyle, our handpicked selection has something for everybody.

Babel, TTDI

Located on the rooftop of Menara Ken in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Babel offers personalised, one-of-a-kind workouts and state-of-the-art equipment. They even have an infinity pool, so what’s not to love?

There is something for everybody, from HIIT workouts to dance, and there’s the option to train in groups or opt for personal sessions if you want more privacy. And aesthetics-wise, we love the uber premium feel of this gym. They also have a sister outlet in KLCC.

Address: Rooftop Menara Ken TTDI, Jalan Burhanuddin Helmi, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, 60000 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6016 319 3520

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Good Juju Barbell Club, Damansara Heights

One of the newer gyms to enter the local fitness scene, Good Juju Barbell Club (GJBC), is as premium as it gets. But their rates are worth it with experienced coaches, a beautiful workout space, and we hear the coffee at GJBC is pretty amazing.

Depending on your mood, there’s personal strength training, and if you don’t want to do it solo, you can opt for group training sessions. We also love their cute hand-dyed socks, the start-up item for their apparel line — perfect for adding to your gym outfit.

Address: L1-13, Level 1 – DC Mall, 6 Jalan Damanlela, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 2011 5556

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KOA Fitness, Mont Kiara

For some ladies, a co-ed workout space can be uncomfortable for whatever valid reason they may be – but at KOA Fitness, you don’t have to be. A women-only gym that offers yoga, cardio, and body weight classes, you can now pick your poison without worrying.

Located in the upscale neighbourhood of Mont Kiara, the gym is accessible and has remained strong in the fitness scene. Don’t want to attend classes physically? Sign up for their online personal training instead.

Address: B-G-07, Gateway Corporate Suites, No 1 Jalan Desa Kiara, Mont Kiara, 50480 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6011 6455 8912

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Clubaloha, Sri Hartamas

There are boutique gyms, and then there’s THE boutique gym, which happens to be Clubaloha. Partly founded by the incomparable Katrina Taib, Aloha started as a humble (but very hip) spin studio that’s now grown into more than just that.

Also available is their Aloha Muscle Club, perfect for those who prefer conditioning-type workouts instead of burning the hell outta yo’ thighs on a spin bike. Though, we admit their spin classes are as lovable as they are torturous (in a good way). While you’re there for a sweat session, drop by Rubberduck for some good eats — also part of the Clubaloha group.

Address: Plaza Damas, Lot K-0-8B, Ground Floor, Dorchester Service Apartment, 60, Jalan Sri Hartamas 1, Taman Sri Hartamas, 50480 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 6201 1834

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Urban Spring Pilates, Bangsar & Mont Kiara

Dial down the adrenaline but keep the intensity, and you’ll find yourself at Urban Spring Pilates. Having been around for a while now, you will find something suited to all levels of pilates enthusiasts.

The experienced instructors will help you in your pursuit of wellness, whether on the mat or the reformer machine. You can also spice things up if you want with their hot pilates. We promise you will feel a different kind of rejuvenation after. Chose from one of their three outlets: two in Jalan Bangkung, Bangsar, and the other in Mont Kiara.

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F45, Kuala Lumpur & Petaling Jaya

If you’re new to the fitness scene, you may not be familiar with F45, but they have been around for a while and are known for their unique and functional training guaranteed to improve your energy levels, strength, and endurance.

Many can vouch for F45 and how it has contributed to their fitness journey, and those who hate working out solo especially love the group setting. Pick any one of their seven outlets within the Klang Valley to get started.

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CrossFit Pahlawan, Ara Damansara

CrossFit Pahlawan is located on the rooftop of Citta Mall, where people from all walks of life are welcome to pursue their fitness goals, maintain them, or get even stronger! Started by a group of individuals passionate about fitness, this CrossFit gym is truly one-of-a-kind and feels like a home away from home. The coaches here are experienced, as they are helpful and committed to transforming you into the best (and strongest) version of yourself.

It doesn’t matter what level of fitness you’re at; everyone has the same goal: to help one another be stronger and better than they were yesterday. With plenty of timings for members to choose from, this rooftop workout space is also open all day for those who prefer doing their own thing; but the community at Pahlawan is unlike any other, so we’re quite sure you’ll end up joining the group workouts!

Address: Citta Mall, Jalan PJU 1A/48, PJU 1A, 47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor,
Contact: +6011 3527 5987

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Hikari MMA, Bangsar

Located in the vibrant neighbourhood of Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur, Hikari MMA is a training facility that offers its students mixed martial arts, boxing, Muay Thai, and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu classes (BJJ)–all in a dynamic and inclusive environment.

It’s also one of the first martial arts academies that offer an all-women Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu class, which helps those who feel slightly intimidated by the idea of rolling on the mat with men. The team of Hikari MMA are also made up of coaches that are skilled, patient, and experienced, so you can be sure you’re in good hands.

As beginners at Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with no idea of what to expect, a few of Zafigo’s team members were met with a welcoming atmosphere, which clearly reflected the gym’s commitment to cultivate a supportive community. Professor Bruno, the head coach at Hikari, is attentive, accommodating, and encouraging, making it easy to foster a love for this sport. So, whether you’re a seasoned fighter or a newbie white belt at BJJ, Hikari MMA has the kind of nurturing space you’d want.

Address: 2 Jalan Telawi 2, Bangsar, 59100 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6011 2541 6126

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Sculpt Club, Mont Kiara

We first came across Sculpt Club on TikTok (where else?), and the videos we saw definitely piqued our interest. While we know there are many pilates studios in the Klang Valley, what sets Sculpt Club is their intimate setting –– only private training sessions are conducted here. While group training is an option, it is capped at a maximum of four pax for reformer pilates. Mat pilates is also available for those who prefer to stay away from the machines. We can’t help but get inspired and motivated by Julia Van Der Drift’s pilates flex.

Address: 11-3 Jalan Solaris, Solaris Mont Kiara, Mont Kiara, 50480 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6018 356 2940

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MYBJJ Academy, Kota Damansara

MYBJJ Academy cannot come any more highly recommended if you’re looking to start your Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu journey. Helmed by Professor Marco, MYBJJ Academy is made up of supportive practitioners and welcomes people from all walks of life and all ages. While they don’t have a specific class for women, there are plenty within the MYBJJ close-knit community.

Their junior class is something I’d encourage all parents to enrol their kids in; what the little ones bring home besides a new skill is a strengthened sense of confidence, camaraderie, mental resilience, and best of all, a passion for the art of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Whether you’re a kid or an adult, a newbie or not, such an inclusive and family-like atmosphere makes MYBJJ Academy the perfect place to get exceptional training.

Address: 5-1, 1st Floor, Jalan PJU 5/20B The Strand, Kota Damansara, 47810 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Contact: +6019 399 5734

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Karma Yoga, Bangsar

Nestled in the heart of Jalan Telawi in Bangsar, Karma Yoga is a great studio offering all yogis a serene and transformative space to practice. Bangsar is spoilt for choice when it comes to yoga studios, but Karma is truly a sanctuary where you can cultivate physical strength, mental clarity, and spiritual awareness. Led by experienced and compassionate instructors, you can take your pick from Hatha, Vinyasa, and Yin yoga, which all cater to different needs and preferences.

Besides the physical benefits, the yoga studio firmly believes in embracing the philosophy of karma — hence the name — and encourages members to bring mindfulness and compassion into their daily lives. So, what are you waiting for? Nourish your mind, body, and soul by signing up for a class here.

Address: 20-2, Jalan Telawi 3, Bangsar, 59100 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +6017 319 2909

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Journey, Damansara Heights

If there were a cool kid in the spin class world, Journey would definitely be it, thanks to its state-of-the-art cycling equipment. We’re talking 31 bikes, a crisp sound system, and they’ve got some cool lighting to elevate the entire experience! Personally, I can say that it’s a little intimidating going into a spin studio as a beginner. Still, oftentimes you’ll find that spin instructors are incredibly motivating, inspiring, and above all else, helpful.

If you’re looking for a fun and results-driven fitness regimen, Journey is the perfect place to embark on a transformative journey. Regardless of if you’re a pro cyclist or a beginner, this place caters to all fitness levels, offering challenging yet adaptable classes that promote cardiovascular health, strength, and endurance.

Address: Plaza Zurich, M-01, Mezzanine Floor, Connecting Podium, No, 12, Jalan Gelenggang, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur
Contact: +603 2713 1088

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Editor’s note: This article was originally published on 29 July 2022 and has been updated to include more locations.