Sydney’s Ultimate Gym

No more than 100 vetted clients and three per class — Lockeroom is the elevated fitness friend you need.

By Robb Report Staff 16/11/2021

Let’s cut straight to it — most gyms are awful.

For all the banter about betterment and community, most of these offerings prove little more than a collective of fuckwit muscle and unwanted leering — see: Stereosonic — framed by florescent lighting and mirrored grunting, ego and attitude.

Sydney’s Lockeroom is no such place.

Recently presenting to this darkened yet glassed and open Bridge St address was to find a genuinely welcoming atmosphere and a set of trainers going about actual training, utilising a heady outlay of sophisticated equipment that all came together to spell CLASS.

Lockeroom is an exclusive offering unashamedly aimed at the Harbour City’s top tier — a selection of approved high-flyers, chieftains and C-suite execs who crave regimes delivered by Australia’s best.

While that former sentence could easily prompt images of testosterone-soaked wankery and flags, the words ‘BOYS CLUB’ writ large, being flown — no, this is also not the Lockeroom.

On our debut visit it was in fact women — some identifiable by their impressive professional CVs of achievement in the tech and finance sectors — who were eagerly being put through their paces.

Class sizes here are tightly held and strictly limited — that is, “semi-private” training that is always “one-on-one or one-on-two” — so too the number of members on the books at any time, that number being 100.

The man delivering the quotation marks is Lockeroom co-founder Lachlan Rowston. His vision for this impressive fitness outing — one of immediate allure — is shared with Raph Freedman. Together the pair has has not only established themselves as trainers of high regard and results-led appeal, they have also been held aloft via their voices and the nationally recognised The Mind Muscle Project podcast. It’s this project that enabled the pair to travel and view what was happening in overseas gyms and across the wider global industry — noting the successes achieved by welcoming, well conceived, highly engaged and intelligently-led gyms aimed directly at HNW individuals and professional leaders.

“We’d experienced a lot of what was happening in New York, LA, Miami, Hong Kong,” says Rowston. “And we knew a lot of executives and what they needed or wanted through our training of them over the years — they are highly accountable, they know how to push themselves and what it means to work hard. And so all of this came together in launching the Lockeroom.”

The gym opened in March and then moved outside during the city’s extended lockdown — “we were one of the only to provide structured classes in the CBD and so we picked up a few residents who moved into the city and also by word of mouth.”

Rowston is adamant the lucky 100 will remain just that number — “it’s our sweet spot, it works and is how we’ve set it up.”

How one comes to gain access is via direct referral and also the team’s own vetting.

“70% are referrals and the 30% who aren’t we research and find connections and then go through our networks to qualify them prior.”

Such exclusivity is appealing. So too the Aesop products in the the bathrooms and the inclusive laundry service (yes, you never need transport your own gym gear again).

But for all the attraction of unlimited ‘Geranium Leaf Body Cleanser’ and a fresh scented holdall under the desk, Lockeroom delivers where it matters most. Class sizes are actually held at the numbers espoused and the induction process is extensive, detailed and personal. From basic orientation, new clients are also given strength assessments that lead to detailed program designs that come attached to medicals, nutritional consults and boxing introductions.

Classes cover the two core pillars of strength and cardio via functional movement, gymnastics, powerlifting, boxing, weightlifting and endurance training — each customised to an individual client.

“Our classes run for an hour — 40 minutes of strength work and then 20 minutes of cardio / interval training. We were initially running them at 50 minutes so people could get in and out within the hour, but then we watched it play out and saw that many of our clients didn’t mind training a bit longer, they were happy to do 60 minutes and if they have to rush out they skip the cardio and pick it up [later].”

As for the luxury equipment — from free weights through to treadmills, bikes, ski-ergs, cable machines, rowers and both boxing bags and a ring — nothing here is left lacking.

Each Lockeroom client is also gifted a Whoop band to track time outside the gym — recovery, sleep, diet — and which further feeds into a person’s plan.

“So many of our clients are data-driven by nature of their work and want that approach to training,” adds Rowston. “It’s not just about time in the gym, what’s happening in those hours outside are just as important.”

Lockeroom, 38–40 Bridge Street, Sydney; lockeroomgym.com

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