Sometimes you want to walk into a fitness space and feel zen. Other times you want to feel pumped. The latter is what you’ll get at FoxFit, a new gym for female-identifying customers.

Founder and personal trainer Tom Hose says it was the “comrade mentality” at other gyms that led him to open the first iteration of FoxFit in Sandringham back in 2011.

“A big part of it was the high-fiving, guys carrying on about what they did on the weekend,” he says. “It just wasn’t a very nurturing space, and it was quite distracting.”

Earlier this year, Hose moved FoxFit to Cubitt Street in Cremorne and fine-tuned the offering. Class sizes are limited to 12 people, split into two groups with one trainer (Hose is the only male trainer at the gym – the others are all women). In each session, one group hits the treadmills first (guided by video instructions), while the other group takes up spots inside a grid on the floor, then the groups swap over.

“Everyone will have a two-metre-by-two-metre dedicated space [on the grid],” Hose says. “The ability to have the trainer watch everyone on the grid is probably the most personalised group fitness. We don’t miss a beat with that format. It’s like a symphony. It’s all really well synchronised.”

There are four FoxFit classes to choose from. Functional is a full-body circuit session, with 40-second bursts before changeovers. Interval is all about short, intense bursts, while Strength is designed to increase endurance. The Glutes + Abs class is the most popular – weights are sparse, but Bosu balls, blocks and ropes are integrated throughout the session.

Each class provides an intense workout, but Hose says it’s all relative. “Because we’re [working in] quite small classes, we have the ability to individualise,” he says. “So we can progress or digress based on someone’s level.”

Interiors firm Mim Design (AU79, Hunter & Co Deli) is behind the fit-out, which nods to a basketball court. Light pours in between the corrugated-iron roof sheeting and exposed wooden beams overhead, and exposed red brickwork and polished concrete lend an industrial edge.

“I didn’t want it to be too soft and fluffy, like a spa retreat,” Hose says. “We still want to keep that edge.”

The gym is equipped with lockers and the usual get-to-work amenities, including showers, hair dryers, and Eleven hair products in the bathroom. Towels and water bottles are available for a fee.

Single sessions cost $30, and unlimited memberships start at $55 per week. Personal training sessions are also available, and there’s currently a free one-week trial available to first-timers.

This article first appeared on Broadsheet on August 19, 2019. Some details may have changed since publication.