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Work-Life Balance

Work-Life Balance: Fitness at the Makati CBD

By Dindin Reyes on March 23, 2015

Somewhere in the concrete jungle that is Makati, there’s balance to be found.

The central business district may be a dizzying maze of tall buildings and one-way streets but, just like any busy city, you'll find places where the seeds of your work-life balance in Makati city can grow and flourish

If you sit at a desk all day, your body is most probably begging you for some action. If your peace of mind comes from sweating the stress out, there’s a place for you on every other corner of Makati.


Photo from the Empire Boxing Gym Facebook page

Empire Boxing Gym 

2nd floor PT&T building, C. Palanca street, Legazpi village

Open on weekdays until midnight, Empire Boxing Gym is a place where all that after-work stress can go to die. Either join a class or get your own individualized routine from their trainers. Classes offered include boxing, muay thai, and an original fitness program they call B@SSCON!, short for “Bad Ass Conditioning.” They also offer corporate discounts, so if you and your office mates decide to put those boxing gloves on together, the more wallet-friendly it will be.

Team Insider Boxing Gym

8479 Kalayaan Avenue corner Fermina St., Poblacion, Makati City

If you’re new to boxing, the Team Insider trainers will hold your hand through it – well, as much as hand-holding can occur inside the ring. Their boxing and weight training program each have ten levels you can try and aspire to. It’s also a good place to be if you want surround yourself with drive and commitment, as you’ll be around the professional boxers part of the Team Insider team.

Elorde Boxing Gym

3rd Floor A&W Bldg, 1 Juno Street, Makati Avenue

L.P. Leviste cor. Gallardo street, Salcedo village

4/F Presidential Life building, 843 Arnaiz Avenue, Legaspi village

The well-known Elorde Boxing Gym is in the city. All three branches are a short ride or walk from the business district and they’re proven to produce excellence. What other excuses do you have? Elorde specializes in boxing and muay thai so just take your pick.


Photo from the Crossfit Mad Minute Facebook page


Unit 102 G/F First Midland building, 109 Gamboa street, Legaspi village

If you’re the type who needs that extra push to start your fitness regime, try CrossFitMNL. They promise intense, diverse workouts. More than that, they also promise that you’ll be a part of a community of people all trying to become better. Don’t be intimidated by the word crossfit. Wherever you’re coming from and whatever you want to achieve is covered in the four different programs they offer: CrossFitMNL, BootCampMNL, StrikingMNL, and Foundations. Feeling iffy? Book a trial on their website. If you want to bring your kid along, let them try FitKidsMNL.

 Crossfit Mad Minute

Unit G, 7433 Yakal, Makati

Their mantra is “Redefine Fitness. Redefine You.” You don’t have to be that person stuck at the desk with nothing else to talk about but work. You can try crossfit with Crossfit Mad Minute. Their Workout of the Day (WOD) classes are 1 hour long, perfect for that lunch time break from 12 noon to 1pm. They also have classes at 6:15 in the morning and in the evening at 5:30, 6:30, 7:30 and 8:30 – more than enough options for whatever your work schedule is like. The WOD classes are designed for General Physical Preparedness so you don’t have to look like a warrior right away.


Photo from the Vivian Zapanta blog

Options Studio

Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation, Makati

With studios in Singapore, Manila and Bangkok, you can be sure Options Studio knows their stuff. They have different types of pilates classes you can choose from like STOTT Pilates Blend, Gentle Pilates, Reform Pilates, and classes like Matwork, Suspend Matwork, Circuit, and even Post-Natal and Pre-Natal classes. Build your balance, posture and core with Options Studio and see yourself slowly become stronger.

Vivian Zapanta Pilates Studio

Ground Floor-B, Tiffany Place, #156 L.P. Leviste St., Salcedo Village, Makati City

The Vivan Zapanta Pilates Studio specializes in STOTT Pilates, a modern approach to pilates that you may want to try. STOTT Pilates uses signature equipment and exercise to get you lean, coordinated, and feeling good. If you’re the type who sits in an office all day, it’s time to get moving and explore the other movements your body can do besides walking, sitting and placing your hands on a desk. They also have rehab pilates and private to semi-private classes for those who need a little more extra care.

 Integrated Body Arts

227 Nicanor Garcia St., Bel Air Vill. 2 1209

Another place to try pilates is the Integrated Body Arts studio. The low-impact, full body exercise is taught here with what they describe as “personalized attention and intelligent teaching.” Their instructors studied the original method under such master instructors as Romana Kryzanowska, Sari Mejia Santo, Juanita Lopez and Cynthia Lochard.

Onelife studio

2F BCS Prime Building, 2297 Chino Roces avenue, Makati

Onelife offers different fitness regimens but in their Makati studio, their schedule is mostly filled with pilates. They have Reformer Pilates, Pilates Infused Yoga, and for those without much time, they have Matwork Pilates which lasts for 45 minutes. Under an hour, they will help you workout your abs, arms, thighs, or your whole body if that’s what you choose. Aside from pilates they also offer yoga, prenatal yoga, bellydance, and poi.


Photo from the Jollijam website

Studio 116 Dance School

Suite 135-B, Ground Floor, LRI Plaza, 210 Nicanor Garcia Street, Bel-Air II, Makati City

Studio 116 Dance school believes everyone can dance. If you don’t think you can, maybe you just need someone to show you how. Here you can learn hip hop, zumba, swing, salsa and social foxtrot. True to their philosophy, they even have a class called ‘Anyone Can Dance.’ Another original class of theirs is the Shiba class – an aerobic class that combines movements from salsa, chacha, rumba, jive, samba and the batchata. If you’ve got a wedding coming up, this is the perfect place to start learning that one-two step.

Jollijam Arts Center

Three Salcedo Place, 123 Tordesillas street, Makati

Dancing is not just for people who’ve been doing it since they were young. Try something new at Jollijam Arts Center with their wide variety of classes you can choose from. You can try jazz, pole dancing, vegas strip, zumba – or maybe even all of them. For the fitness buffs who aren’t so into moving to a beat, Jollijam also has Punch Bag Aero, Wing Chun kung fu and Taekwondo.


Tuscan Building, 114 V.A. Rufino St, Makati

Exercise cultivates the mind and the body. For DanzWorks, the best way to get that mind-body fitness is through dance. They’ve got classes in dance fitness, sensual dance, salsa, body isolation, belly dance, and jazz. They treat dancing as a lifestyle they’d like to share so expect passion and lots of it. For a break from the dance floor, they also have yoga classes you can ask about.


Photo from the Bliss Yoga website
Photo from the Bliss Yoga website

Yoga +

Tordesillas cor. Gallardo Streets Salcedo Vilage Makati

The Yoga+ studio in Salcedo village is a beautiful place to start your yoga practice. For whatever level you’re at and whatever yoga you’d like to try, they’ve got you covered. They have hot yoga, vinyasa, yin yoga, jivamukti, and even a special class called Power Hour. Power Hour is a dynamic class tailored to fit into your one-hour lunch break. If you’ve got Japanese workmates or bosses, invite them over. Yoga+ has classes in Japanese as well.

Bikram Yoga Manila

15/F 88 Corporate Center, 141 Valero St. cor. Sedeno St., Salcedo Village, Makati

Bikram Yoga are for those people who really want to sweat the stress out. A hot type of yoga, Bikram classes use the same sequence of poses every time in a very warm, heated room. Come prepared by hydrating beforehand and bringing a towel and a bottle of water to beat the heat. For those on a budget, they’ve got beginner packages as well as a special Early Bird package. For the Early Bird package, you get to do yoga at a cheaper price as long as you take the 6:30am classes only – perfect for a pre-office workout.

 Bliss Yoga 

Unit 203 Plaza One Hundred, VA Rufino Street cor Dela Rosa Street Legaspi Village, Makati City

Bliss Yoga believes there’s really no reason for you to not practice yoga. It’s not all the backbending, extreme flexibility poses that you see on the Internet – at least not at the start. For beginners, they have a Gentle Flow and Yoga Fundamentals class that will start you out slow and safe until you graduate to something intermediate. They also have a one-hour class at lunch to work with your time constraints.

 ECHOYoga Shala

3rd Floor, Steps Dance Academy Building 8465 Kalayaan Avenue (behind Rockwell) Barangay Poblacion, Makati City

Aside from offering regular yoga classes, ECHOYoga Shala also has offerings suited to your company’s needs. They can do corporate yoga right at your home base and even be present at your team building events. For non-fitness needs ECHOYoga Shala is also a place where you can get private, confidential counseling as well as body-energy healing. Some of the healing methods they offer are QI Healing, Ventosa, Refloxology and Acupuncture.

Iyengar Yoga Center Manila

4/F Joya South tower, Rockwell Center Makati 

Iyengar is a kind of yoga that uses a variety of props in every pose to get you to your optimal alignment and depth. In any given class, you’ll be using things like chairs, blocks, belts and ropes to get you deeper into the pose. They have three levels you can progress towards as well as a class for general back health. For those who live with the idea that precision is key, Iyengar yoga might be for you.

 Stillpoint Manila 

Carlos P Romulo Peace Center, Century Plaza, 120 Perea St., Legaspi Village, Makati

Stillpoint Manila is a place where you can master your Ashtanga practice. Ashtanga is a type of yoga where the sequence is the same every time. For those who need a more meditative experience, the repeated poses could help you draw inwards more. You can either take a guided practice, or a Mysore practice where you practice in a group without the instructions of a teacher.

Surya Fitness & Yoga

Medicard Lifestyle Center 51 Paseo de Roxas cor. Senator Gil Puyat Avenue Makati City 

For a different view of Makati, go to Surya. While you practice, enjoy the space’s natural light and pleasant views you can focus your gaze on. They have all kinds of classes like Basic Yoga, Hatha, Vinyasa, Ashtanga Vinyasa, and even Pilates. Their weekday classes are mostly in the early morning, or later on in the evening.

Urban Ashram 

2/F 6780 Ayala Avenue, Makati City

Just like their name suggests, Urban Ashram is a yoga center smack in the middle of Manila’s busy cities – including Makati. They have over 10 kinds of classes you can try, including a class tailored for people who are new to yoga called Flexibility Not Required. They also do private group classes fit for your office. For those who are always online, you can reserve a class online to make sure you get that mat space where you can relax, play, and explore.

Martial arts

Photo from the Kyokushin-kan Karate Philippines Facebook page

Makati Matial Arts and Sports Center Gym 

4008 Yague Street, Makati city

They’d like you to think of it as your gym and our gym. Here you can learn all kinds of self-defense methods from Muay Thai and Jiu-Jitsu to Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing.

Kyokushin-kan Karate Philippines 

2nd floor Makati Square Arena, Makati Cinema Square Pasong Tamo corner Pasay Road, Makati

There’s no better place to learn Karate than in a Karate center. Their sessions are an hour and a half, with Monday, Wednesday and Friday having more work-friendly time slots - one at 5pm and the other at 7pm.

KMA Fitness and Martial arts

104 Tordesilas Street, Salcedo Village, Makati

There’s a multitude of things you can try at KMA Fitness and Martial Arts. Take your pick: boxing, judo, muay thai, BJJ, mixed martial arts, kickboxing , yoga, arnis, conditioning, wrestling , capoeira, taekwondo, self Defense and even zumba. Their goal is to have a family-oriented facility so, if you’d like to train with your children they are definitely welcome at KMA.

Whatever floats your boat, you can find it in Makati. The door to a more balanced work-life is probably just a few minutes away so when the work day is done, get out of the office and get moving.

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