Fitness And Flirting: The Tinder Dating Workout

Unbound writer Alix tried out a fitness class devised by dating app Tinder and hip gym 1Rebel. But did she manage to pull more than a muscle?

Damn, I’ve lost my phone number. Can I have yours?

I recently became single. Single, and not quite ready to mingle.

Since the split, I’ve pretty much just sat on my arse comfort-gorging Kettle Chips, salty tears running  down my face, salty crumbs gathering in my lap. But I’ve decided it’s time to pick myself up, dust myself down, and move onwards, upwards, and forwards. And it’s definitely time to move my body.

A fitness class cum matchmaking night for singletons sounded like an ideal solution

So when I heard about #TheSwipeLife, it seemed like an ideal solution – a fitness class-cum-matchmaking night for singletons, held at über-fashionable London gym 1Rebel, in association with dating app Tinder.

Check out this video of swanky gym 1Rebel

1Rebel is a fledgling chain of ‘boutique gyms’, currently only in London, but with plans to expand across the UK. They offer intense workouts held in dark rooms, illuminated by disco lights and soundtracked by custom mixes from internationally acclaimed DJs. So far, so conducive to luurve.

1Rebel offer intense workouts held in dark rooms illuminated by disco lights

Usually, 1Rebel offer two main types of fitness class: RIDE, an indoor cycling session incorporating weights and resistance bands; and RESHAPE, which combines interval training on treadmills with floor work and exercises on custom benches, in a throbbing nightclub-style atmosphere.

But this special one-off #TheSwipeLife class was something a bit different. A fitness dating class which was a collaboration between Tinder (who’ll be introducing more events such as these around the country) and 1Rebel, the intense class aimed to bring together like-minded, unattached guys and gals who were dedicated to fitness.

Is your surname Jacobs? ‘Cos you’re a cracker

It was essentially a standard RESHAPE class – i.e. 45-minutes of bloody hard work – with some Tinder-themed puns chucked in for good measure. When the instructor said “Swipe right”, for example (the action you perform on someone’s profile in the app if you fancy them), you moved to the piece of equipment on your right-hand side.

There were lots of exercises where you teamed up with a partner, like jumping onto a box while holding hands

There were also lots of exercises where you teamed up with a partner: passing a medicine ball back and forth to each other over your heads; high-fiving from the floor as you did push ups; jumping onto a box while holding hands.

While you might think this’d be the perfect opportunity for flirtation and body contact, I didn’t want to meet anyone’s eye, because I was too embarrassed about how I was performing. I couldn’t keep up, frankly, and I felt like a tit. I was also paired with a 6’5” guy during the medicine-ball-over-the-head exercise. I’m 5’4”. That was interesting.

Phwoar, your vest feels like boyfriend material

I don’t think the class was really aimed at those who didn’t know much about exercise and were there for the social aspect – and potentially to score – rather it was for the hardcore fitties.

A male instructor with biceps bigger than my flat helped me perfect some of the moves

To get the most out of these classes, you’ll need to instantly know what the instructor means when she tells you to execute, say, a ‘Russian Twist’. She wore a Britney-style headset and strode around the darkened room – so I found her tricky to spot if I needed to watch a demo of a move or to ask for help.

Luckily, a male instructor with biceps bigger than my flat came to my rescue and helped me perfect some of the moves, but at this point I was past flirting. I was soaked with sweat and panting like a cow in labour. I didn’t feel very sexy.

Have you been sitting in sugar? ‘Cos you’ve got a sweet ass!

In short, the whole pulling thing wasn’t going very well. There were more women than men there, and most of the blokes were so young I was surprised they weren’t swigging milk from their water bottles (I’m 32; they were fresh uni graduates).

The darkness made me feel tired after a long day, and the lights and shouting gave me a migraine. I wasn’t exactly winning. But I could see how the whole thing could be massively fun if you weren’t being a humongous misery guts.

While it may not have scored me a date, at least it inspired me to get off the sofa

While I wouldn’t necessarily choose the gym or a fitness dating class as a way to pull in future, I’d maybe go back to 1Rebel for a standard class – the session was chuffing difficult, but I ached in all the right places the next day.

And while it may not have scored me a date, at least it inspired me to get off the sofa and stop eating crisps. I even went for a 10k run yesterday. The only way is up.

Alix gets stuck into the post-class prosecco


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