Aerial Studios in London

This post is geared more towards beginners as it’s based on my opinions and experience in the past couple of years that I’ve lived and trained in London. You might want to read Starting out: How to Choose a Gym first, which will give you a broader overview of criteria that goes into picking an aerial studio.

I’ll compare the prices for a single drop-in class as a simple benchmark. However, in general you’ll get more value for money if you can buy classes in bulk or get a membership.

London (Westminster)

Flying Fantastic

This is the gym I would recommend for most London-based aspiring aerialists. FF specialize in aerial fitness and offer silks, slings, hoop, static trapeze, rope and other classes. They accept complete beginners but also provide options for more advanced students. At the start of an all-levels class they will split it into less and more experienced halves). I did most of my initial training there. While I had a couple of bad experiences (not every teacher handles beginners equally well…), the majority has been good. Unfortunately the location doesn’t work so well for me anymore. I’d suggest trying different classes and teachers to find the ones that suit you best.

A peak drop-in class is £25 and off-peak £20. If it’s you haven’t been before but are interested, make use of the New Customer offer and see if you like the studio. Their main venue is in London Bridge, but they offer some classes in other locations.

London Dance Academy

LDA is a mainly pole dance focused studio in Old Street that also offers aerial hoop, silks, rope and aerial yoga. The ceilings are pole-height, which is not ideal – you simply can’t climb high or perform certain moves.

While I really like LDA for pole and aerial yoga, I was initially (~2017) a bit less impressed by other aerial classes. The few sessions I’d been to also didn’t seem structured that well and had one teacher for slightly too many students of varied levels. That said, I started going more again in 2018 after work location change and had a better experience. I mostly go for aerial hoop currently and like the teacher a lot.

A 90 minute drop-in class will cost you £18, which is slightly cheaper than other options. Their membership/class-pack structure is a bit unusual, but worth a look if you go often.

Ecole de Pole

Similarly to the above, this is mostly a pole studio that now also offers silks and hoop classes. It is located in Camden, and the price for a drop-in to a 75 minute class is £18.9. I haven’t tried it myself yet, but plan to do so soon.

National Centre for Circus Arts

Located in Shoreditch. They offer very structured aerial & acrobatic courses with set dates and progression routes. Unfortunately that hasn’t fit into my work schedule yet. If you’re unsure, you can also go for a circus experience day. They also include some harder to find disciplines, such as Chinese pole, flying trapeze and tightwire walking. If you want to start training at higher level than 1, you’ll need to complete an aerial assesment.

The course price is around £250 for a 12-week course, which amounts to ~£21 per session. No refunds if you miss any.

Gymbox

Gymbox is a gym chain with a number of locations in central London. They offer a huge variety of classes, including aerial hoop, trapeze, yoga and pole. If you’re looking for a general gym that just happens to offer some aerials in addition to the usual facilities, this is probably your best bet.

My main issue with it is that you can’t pay per class, you need to get a monthly membership. The price varies and is not shown on the website. They will give you a free tour if you’re interested, and they offer corporate memberships if your company supports that.

I’ve also heard mixed reviews about the atmosphere; if you like dark gyms with loud music, might enjoy it.

Skylab

Skylab is a studio in Camden I’m interested in trying someday. They recommend that you are able to do a pull up / have some upper body strength before even starting Level 1, so I might leave it until I feel more confident about my skills. They offer silks and hoop courses in addition to a variety of aerial fitness classes, most of them in the evenings. A drop-in class will cost you £20.

Arena Aerial

A bit further out in north London. They offer aerial courses where you can try several apparatuses, even as an absolute beginner. They don’t seem to offer drop-ins, but the price of a class in a course comes out to ~£15 or lower, so cheaper than many other options. I haven’t tried the studio myself yet.

Aircraft Circus

Located near London City Airport. A drop-in class is £25, but they also run a variety of courses (some that you might not find often include Cyr Wheel, Flying Trapeze and Chinese Pole). The courses seem to mostly run in 6 week cycles. I haven’t tried the venue yet personally.

If you know of other locations in London that offer aerial classes, do let me know – I always like to explore new options.

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