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Out of the Box Fitness: Boxing In The Dark

Think effective workouts are all sweat and no play? Think again. We’ve scoured the city for the most innovative workouts to reboot your fitness game—just in time for summer.

July 22, 2021

Had enough of slogging away yet again on the treadmill or in the weight room? Us too. While we have nothing against tried-and-true traditional workouts, sometimes a heavy dose of fun is just the thing to snap us out of our fitness funk, inspire us to get our sweat on, and most importantly, keep at it. Luckily, there have been plenty of exciting alternatives popping up around town to help shake up our workout routines. From boxing in the dark to channelling your inner crab, join us as we try out four of Hong Kong’s most out-of-the-box workouts over the next few weeks, which blend novelty with cutting-edge technology and innovative techniques. The best part? You’ll have a blast while doing them.


Photo: Lights Out Boxing

With dimmed iridescent lights and energising beats reverberating from the speakers, a training session at Lights Out Boxing feels more like a night out with friends than a hardcore total body workout. That’s exactly what founder Billy Tam had in mind when setting up the city’s first immersive boutique boxing studio of its kind in 2018. 

“I knew that boxing was a great workout, but realised so many people were intimidated by the idea of being a beginner, so I set off to create a concept that would make boxing more approachable,” says Tam, the fitness entrepreneur who’s also behind martial arts and Muay Thai gym Warrior Hong Kong and sportswear store The Rig. “After some research, I came across the concept of nightclub-style boxing and became instantly interested. My business partners and I soon flew to the US and UK to experience the classes for ourselves.” 

Billy Tam | Photo: Lights Out Boxing

Partying and letting off steam while sculpting your arms, core, and legs—all in under an hour? Perhaps that’s why the Sheung Wan studio (it moved from its smaller Tin Hau location in 2019) is one of the city’s hottest places to exercise. Taught by a dynamic roster of instructors that includes competitive powerlifter Acton, league field hockey player Coco, dancer and model Angie, and Lululemon ambassador and spin instructor Jess, the 50-minute Classic class involves alternating between HIIT and throwing boxing sequences at an aqua punching bag to efficiently work the entire body, while more advanced students will enjoy the Blitz class, which features tougher floor-side workouts. The inclusive vibe, evocative dark atmosphere, and hard-hitting playlists might just make you want to bust out a dance move or two in between jabs. 

“Our classes are very experiential and provide an extremely non-intimidating way to box,” says Tam. “We want everyone to lose themselves in the music, leave all their stress behind, and come out of the class re-energised.” Looking ahead, he believes there is still plenty of room to grow in the alternative boutique fitness scene in Hong Kong, especially after a year dominated by virtual and at-home workouts. “As more people look at fitness as their choice of social activity, much like going to different restaurants, I believe interesting fitness concepts and bespoke small-group personal training studios will see a surge.”