When you’re into fitness, going to the gym becomes an integral part of your life. And that’s why you have to find the right one for yourself.
I’ve spent a fair share of time in all top-tier gyms, including Planet Fitness, LA Fitness, Equinox, OrangeTheory, and many more.
Currently, I had an ongoing membership at the YMCA before I had to move to the United Kingdom for my work.
The first thing on my agenda? You guessed it – finding a new gym.
Of course, I could probably find a Y in the UK as well. But I decided I needed a change of scenery.
And from all the talk I heard about David Lloyd, I had to get a club membership to try it out. I’ve always wanted to try that fitness franchise. But because it’s limited to the United Kingdom and Europe (and some locations in Asia), I never got around to it.
Fortunately, now was the time for me to finally get a David Lloyd membership.
I have been working out there for the past couple of months, and it’s really different from what I am used to.
If you are looking to purchase the David Lloyd club membership yourself, there are many things that you should know beforehand. So, to help you make a more informed decision, I decided to write this review for you.
Is David Lloyd a Good Gym?
Based on my own personal experiences, David Lloyd is one of the better gyms that I have seen. And to give you an idea, I’ve worked out in giant franchises and fitness chains like Gold’s Gym, LifeTime Fitness, and Crunch Fitness.
So when I say that David Lloyd was cleaner, better equipped, and offered way more amenities, the praise is as high as can be. It’s also the truth – David Lloyd Leisure, as the name suggests, is a premium fitness club.
Notice how I am not calling it a gym? Because it’s much more than that. It is more of a sports/athletic facility catering to multiple target markets – athletes, bodybuilders, fitness-oriented families, and so on.
The amount of diversity I saw in David Lloyd was insane. There were people from all age groups, from young adults to elderly couples. There was even an entire section devoted to children and pre-teens engaging in physical and healthy activities.
At David Lloyd, there’s always so much going on, and yet; it never feels too crowded. It’s part of the charm of the place.
That being said, so many amenities come at a cost – a hefty one. For the general population, purchasing a David Lloyd membership can prove to be expensive.
But I figured out a way around that too.
I have a few friends and co-workers attending the same David Lloyd club as myself. They were the ones who actually recommended that I try out the franchise.
Sophie, one of my oldest friends in the United Kingdom, told me that David Lloyd could be a little flexible with their pricing models. And so, when I was discussing the membership cost, I haggled a bit. Turns out the friendly staff decided to give me a small discount and waived my joining fee entirely!
So, if you find the price of David Lloyd’s membership too costly, you can try to haggle a bit.
Anyway, I would have joined the club even if I had to pay the standard membership cost. The presence of so many amenities, a clean and comfortable environment, and spacious facilities make the expenses worth it.
If you go and work out in groups as I do, your experience at David Lloyd could be even more fun. While the gym is definitely my center of attention, I still treat any David Lloyd club as a social place where you can hang out and have fun with your friends.
That being said, fitness should be your primary focus. All the other amenities should be kept as a reward for your hard work inside the gym.
I have been following this mantra for the past couple of months, and all the workouts feel as if they were worth the trouble, simply because I had so much fun and excitement waiting for me after my training session.
So, if you are looking for a place where you can work out and afterward hang around and enjoy other amenities like spas, swimming pools, and so on, David Lloyd Leisure is the perfect place for you.
If you just want to work out and need to find a good commercial gym for that, there are other cheaper alternatives that you should look for first.
Does David Lloyd Have Good Equipment?
I talked a lot about David Lloyd as an elite social club. All the amenities make the price of the membership worth it. But what about the basic amenities like machines and equipment at the gym?
That bit is important to me. During my time at Planet Fitness, for instance, I missed many coveted machines like squat racks and bench presses. There were no deadlift platforms either.
So, I am always a bit wary of family-oriented fitness clubs like David Lloyd because they might not cater to bodybuilding exercises. But fortunately, that wasn’t the case.
In most David Lloyd gyms, you will find areas devoted entirely to free weights, cardio, and functional training.
In the free weight section, you can find standard equipment like barbells, kettlebells, dumbbells, power racks, and resistance machines designed even for the most experienced lifters.
I did not have a lot of experience with functional training areas, so I was excited to try that out. When I went there, I found many training gears like weight sleds, battle ropes, TRX traps, and plyo boxes.
The cardio section at my David Lloyd club was even more impressive. Apart from the basic machines like treadmills and ellipticals, I found various high-end equipment like:
- Woodway Curve Treadmills
- Concept 2 Rowing Machines
- Octane Ellipticals
Overall, I was really impressed with what David Lloyd had to offer in terms of equipment and machines for working out. I was really glad that there were resistance machines and weights for all kinds of lifters – beginners, intermediate, as well as advanced professionals.
Before I had even signed up for my David Lloyd club membership, Sophie and Tom (one of my co-workers) had already bullied me into enrolling in group training sessions with them.
I did not know if I would have the time to attend any classes after my workouts, but I wasn’t left with any choice (my friends are pretty stubborn).
So, I signed up for a few of their popular classes. I’ll tell you all about them.
I was always into a blend of strength training and a bit of cardio.
So, when I first attended the HIIT Cardio class at David Lloyd, I could hardly catch my breath, let alone catch up to my friends.
But in due time, my endurance improved, and I was able to cope with more intense training sessions, something that I appreciate greatly.
Yoga & Pilates
On days when I wasn’t working out or hitting the HIIT cardio, I was doing yoga. I always knew that I had tight muscles and some tension in my back.
Attending group yoga and pilates classes with Sophia really helped me loosen some of that accumulated tension and become more flexible.
I am not going to lie, and I also loved the aura and comfort I felt in the yoga studio down at David Lloyd. I might discontinue all the other classes, but I’ll continue Yoga just for my spiritual and physical well-being.
There are so many outdoor fitness classes; even I haven’t been able to try all of them. There are aquatic classes, swimming classes, strength and conditioning classes, cycling classes, and so on. You can also try out various sports activities like tennis classes.
These group-based outdoor fitness classes are based on the idea of a holistic routine in open-air environments.
Blaze Rebels is the one class that I have not tried. And that’s because it’s a family-oriented routine that allows an entire household to take up HIIT challenges.
Each of these classes comprises 35-minute sessions that combine mixed martial arts with cardio and strength routines.
I haven’t seen this class myself, but I got this information from Sophie’s sister. Yes, she compelled her entire family to get a David Lloyd membership.
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Pool and Spa
For all the aquatic people, you’ll be glad to know that David Lloyd features both swimming pools as well as spas.
There is an extensive range of water-based amenities that you can try out if you have the right membership for it.
Since there are a lot of frequent storms and rainfalls in my area, I was pretty sure that I’ll only be able to use the Lloyd swimming pools on select occasions.
However, they have both indoor and outdoor pools. So, you will be able to take a swim whenever you want, irrespective of the outdoor weather conditions.
The only drawback in this respect is that the swimming pools might be too crowded during peak hours. So you have to pick your time wisely.
There are also shallow splash pools where kids can gather and play with each other. I noticed a lot of lifeguards around the shallow pool, so parents hardly had to worry about the safety of their children.
Most of the kids did not have any guardians around them. So, I was pleasantly surprised to see the amount of trust that members had in David Lloyd.
After getting out of the pool, I usually go and enjoy the many spa facilities offered at the club, complete with steam rooms, whirlpools, and saunas.
As I mentioned, if you keep these amenities as a reward for your hard work in the gym, you would hardly need to spend your money on outdoor social activities.
Now, having a locker room might not be a huge deal for gyms. But David Lloyd’s locker rooms are on another level.
The cleanliness and the aroma make the feeling of being there simply exhilarating. Once you walk into that room, you know that you are part of a luxury group.
To top all the other amenities, there is a delicious cafe bar located within the facility. The items on there are a bit pricey, in my opinion. But one bite of the food would make you feel that the price was worth it.
Fortunately, there are many healthy and delicious options to choose from, so I usually grab my post-workout meal from there.
If you are into sports, you’ll be glad to know that David Lloyd caters specifically to your requirements.
There are many match-quality amenities like racquetball courts, tennis courts, squash courts, and badminton courts that you can use to play. Most of these sports also have their own professional classes in case you want to become better at them.
Other Amenities at David Lloyd
Apart from the high-end and luxurious amenities that we mentioned earlier, there are some other things that you can enjoy at David Lloyd.
Some of them are:
- High-Impact Fitness Studio
- Mind and Body Studio
- Group Cycling Studio
- Adults Lounge
Most of these amenities are fitness-oriented. But some of them are specifically dedicated to the comfort and convenience of David Lloyd’s members.
David Lloyd is one of the most family-friendly gyms in the United Kingdom. As I had mentioned, I have seen so many elderly couples coming in with their children and grandkids to attend fitness classes together.
I have also seen parents spend hours enjoying every amenity that David Lloyd had to offer.
So, what do the children do during this time? They obviously cannot tag along with their parents inside the gym if they are too young.
Fortunately, David Lloyd’s childcare services are immensely popular for all the right reasons.
There are a lot of kid-related activities that children can sign up for, including tennis and racquetball training, playing in the kids’ club, and hanging around in other kids’ areas.
Many areas like the Baby Club and Tots Playtime, as well as creches and other kinds of classes, are available to keep children of all ages occupied while their guardians make good use of their time at the gym.
The only thing is that the children need to have memberships of their own to use this facility.
What are the Pros and Cons of David Lloyd?
David Lloyd might be one of the most premium and convenient fitness clubs in the whole world. But it’s still not perfect.
Like any other gym, there are both positives and negatives to purchasing a David Lloyd membership.
Here is my assessment of the benefits and drawbacks of signing up for David Lloyd:
Pros of Joining David Lloyd
- There is a wide range of facilities and amenities for all members.
- There is a family-friendly and comfortable, inclusive environment for all members.
- It can also act as a social club where you can hang out with friends and family.
- Well-trained personal trainers can guide you and help you work out.
- Latest and state-of-the-art strength and cardio facilities.
- Availability of indoor and outdoor pools.
Cons of Joining David Lloyd
- Too expensive for the general population.
- A cancellation notice needs to be served three months prior.
- Serves a limited number of locations in the United Kingdom.
- Some amenities, like pools, might be a little crowded.
How Much Does a Membership at David Lloyd Cost?
There are over 100 David Lloyd clubs across the United Kingdom. Each branch has different membership prices. Moreover, there are numerous membership options within a David Lloyd club that can dictate the overall cost.
Usually, independent members have to pay anywhere between £90 and £100 depending on the location of the branch.
In my opinion, you should go for the annual membership if you want to save some money. But only do this if you are really committed to your goal of working out frequently.
And remember, negotiate a bit to potentially lower the membership cost.
To get a comprehensive insight into the membership options at David Lloyd, check out David Lloyd Prices & Membership Cost.
Which David Lloyd Membership is Best?
In my opinion, all the premium memberships at David Lloyd are the best because they cover most of the amenities and features offered at the club.
The lowest you should go if you want a complete DL experience is the Platinum membership. It will cover most of the attractive amenities and help you become a part of the club.
But each DL location has its own membership policies. So, it’s better to check in with the front desk to see which membership options suit your requirements.
Does David Lloyd Have Hidden Fees?
David Lloyd does not have any hidden fees. If you sign up for a membership, you will have to pay an initial joining fee of around £50-£100, depending on the type of plan you are purchasing.
In addition, there will be cancellation charges in case you cancel your membership without a 3-month notice.
Is David Lloyd Worth It?
David Lloyd is one of the most premium gyms in the world. Many people think that joining such a fitness club might be too expensive for them.
But if they are looking for an all-around fitness-cum-social club, they wouldn’t get a better option.
If you are going to use all the amenities that David Lloyd provides (or even some of it), like swimming pools, spas, sports facilities, cycling, and so on, then it’s definitely worth it.
If you are simply looking for a gym with standard equipment and machines, you might want to look at some cheaper options.
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David Lloyd is not your conventional commercial gym. It’s an entire health club that offers various fitness-related amenities like a gymnasium, swimming pools, saunas, steam rooms, and much more.
Investing in such a club can help you find both – a good place to work out as well as a great place to hang out with your friends and family.