Where to try your hand (and elbow and knee) at MMA

Former MMA champion Khalid Ismail (see left) trains himself and other pro fighters at the LDG Fitness Centre in Chadwell Heath, which he founded in 2006 after becoming disillusioned with the approach of more mainstream clubs. The gym promises a friendly, affordable high quality establishment in which to train.


13 Bridge Close Romford, RM7 0AU

01708 740011. An access all areas membership costs £80 a month and all classes are free

New Wave Academy covers all aspects of mixed martial arts and is heralded as one of South London’s premier gyms. With only one MMA class a week, it’s not somewhere to go if you want to explore the sport in depth but if you’re after an introduction, it’s a great place to start.


Lewis Sports Centre, Maberly Road, Crystal Palace, SE19 2JH

07956 951 133 Prices start at £30 for membership plus £5 per session

Nestled in a quiet courtyard in Kings Cross, the gym is within close proximity to the City and offers over 70 classes a week. The sessions are delivered by world-class instructors in comfortable, modern surroundings. When you’re done working up a sweat, members can relax in the sauna or juice bar.


4 Bravingtons Walk, Kings Cross, N1 9GA. 020 787 7774

Membership starts at £99, £15 a class

If you plan on taking up mixed martial arts as a serious hobby, there’s no place like London Shootfighters. The gym is a favourite among top competing athletes and is the place to be if you intend to take the discipline to the highest level. It’s the world’s largest MMA gym and has just about every gizmo you could hope for.


Royal Leisure Park, Great Western Way, Park Royal, W3 0PA

Prices for a single class starts at £12

Membership packages from £195

KO MMA is part of the famous KO Gym Group, and while it’s known primarily for Muay Thai, it’s quickly gained a reputation for being one of the best-mixed martial arts destinations. So whether you’re after self-defence techniques or simply want to shift the pounds and get fit, there’s something here for you.


KO Gym, 186 Bancroft Road, London, E1 4ET. 0207 265 9693

Prices start at £10 a session

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