All over the world women are swarming CrossFit boxes in pursuit of health and fitness. CrossFit Tay Ho is no different. Our population of members is 60% female, and 75% of our coaching staff are ladies! Our group of strong women represent 15 different countries - from Canada to Wales to Bhutan to Vietnam and everywhere in-between. We have women who were college athletes and women who never stepped foot in a gym prior to CrossFit. CrossFit represents wellness, hard work, and persistence. It brings together people from all age ranges, races, religions, fitness levels, and educational backgrounds.
CrossFit is redefining fitness and beauty for women. In an article for Time magazine in 2016, Katrin Davidsdottir said, "In CrossFit, there’s no such thing as a male or female workout—we all do the same exercises. There is no fear of women becoming “too strong.” Men and women compete in the same arena (literally), all as part of the same competition."
The women at the front of this movement are not just the elite female athletes like Davidsdottir. It's the women coaches and box owners, female members, young girls who watch their moms, and supporters of the sport who are catapulting this movement.
Here are just a few ways that CrossFit women are shaping the world of fitness.
Being a CrossFit Woman Means Empowering the Female Community
Every woman has experienced some form of judgement when it comes to exercising. Not enough of this or too much of that. Every person that steps into CrossFit Tay Ho is focused on their own personal journey, but with a lot of support behind them. The community of women do not judge - they empower!
Being a CrossFit Woman Means Redefining Stereotypes
CrossFit is not about getting ripped and lifting the most weights. It is about accepting your body and transforming it in whatever way makes you the healthiest and happiest. No longer do women aspire to fit into a certain body type. CrossFit women know that they come in all shapes and sizes.
Being a CrossFit Woman Means Appreciating Yourself
When you work hard and feel good about your wellness journey, appreciating yourself for all you can do comes a lot more easily.
Being a CrossFit Woman Means Celebrating All Your Accomplishments
Getting a pull up for the first time.
Going a little bit deeper in your squat.
Getting a healthy check-up from your doctor.
Not walking on an 800 meter run.
No matter how big or small your accomplishments are, you recognize that every little step means progress.
Being a CrossFit Woman Means Working Hard, Never Giving Up, and Challenging Yourself
Working through progressions to master a movement.
Getting yourself to the box, even when you 'don't feel like it'.
Pushing a little bit harder or faster in a WOD.
CrossFitters know they need to put in the work to see the results.
CrossFit Tay Ho is home to strong, confident women who represent all of these qualities and more. CrossFit has shaped and changed many of our members lives for the better. Here is what they have to say:
"The female community of CrossFit has helped me take more pride in my body and it’s capabilities. In fact, the CrossFit community in general - males and females - has. I’m reminded in CrossFit of all the things I can do, and even those I can’t do yet but will some day with support and hard work. It helps me keep a positive mindset both in and out of the gym."
"CrossFit has become the fitness piece I was missing in my life after not having group fitness for the last couple of years. It has created a way for me to challenge my mental and physical limits, along with being part of an incredibly supportive community.
As a woman, I think it is so important that we support other women and I love that CrossFit allows a place for that. There is always a new level to push yourself to and a supportive community cheering you on. My time in Hanoi would never have been the same if it weren't for CFTH"
"I first joined CrossFit with the goal to get fit, healthy and to look better naked. Little did I know it would teach me to appreciate my body, not for how it looks, but for what it can do. This positive mind shift is not only down to the excellent coaches I have had, but also the inspirational women in the CrossFit community."
"Getting introduced to CrossFit TayHo has brought me so much joy in areas which you couldn’t imagine less you actually experience it yourself. Not only do you get to see, watch and learn from some amazingly strong & talented boys...the women, which I have met throughout my first year in CrossFit, have made it unforgettable.
They’ve shown me how to be comfortable with lifting heavy weights, how to love being so deep into a WOD you even love looking and feeling an absolute sweaty mess with dribble coming out your mouth. I’m not shy to say before joining my first box - CrossFit Tay Ho, I felt intimidated by CrossFit, and pretty much everything which came with it other than the handstand side of it. The loudness of the music throughout a WOD, the sound of a 10000kg barbell smashing off the floor, and some of the women lifting and doing crazy ass moves on a bar...I was like nope, I can’t do this.
A year later CrossFit has done nothing but taught and shown me how to be one of those strong, cool and talented women. I’ve learnt things which I’ll never forget, strength and wisdom from some stronnnnng Momma’s. And.. you’ll learn yourself after one WOD, you generally feel like you’re able to run a marathon, your stamina goes through the roof. Every women needs a bit of CrossFit in their lives.
"My first day of walking into the box...I saw sweaty muscles, heard grunts and heavy thuds of weight dropping to the floor...and it was a class full of bad ass women and one man... I wasn't intimidated.. I was attracted to the energy, the determination and the work ethic. Each woman at the box is on their own journey and together we support each other."
"CFTH gives me my mental health as well as my physical health. I don't know what I would do without the sweat, focus, challenge, and camaraderie of CFTH. All of the members I've worked out with---- past, temporary and present, have supported me....just by being there with me. Crossfit has changed my mind, spirit, and body for the better. I feel STRONG in every way because of it. I never felt that until Crossfit."
"Moving from Bangkok to Hanoi in February 2016, I had a tougher than expected time finding friends and feeling settled in a new city. After a few months, a friend convinced me to try out Crossfit. (I had always been active, but I was extremely nervous and intimidated about starting up a new activity like Crossfit which seemed so intense and hard.). The minute I walked into CFTH, I knew I had found "my people". CFTH is more than a box, it is a family. And what is really cool is that we are a family with such diversity - nationality, age, ability, etc. I love that we are all a bit different - and that is what makes CFTH unique, interesting, and special.
It can be intimidating for women to walk into a male-dominated gym. Walking into Crossfit Tay Ho (or any Crossfit box) you will experience a sense of respect for all athletes, regardless of their gender. CrossFit helps you get fitter, better and stronger physically, mentally and emotionally. The whole community - men and women - add to the empowering dynamic, and make CrossFit Tay Ho a place for anyone. Come see for yourself!
If you’re living in Hanoi, or at least hanging around for more than a few weeks, finding a place to get your sweat on is important. Whether you want to work off the bia hois and banh mis, find a like minded group of people, or simply crave a routine that includes fitness - there are plenty of gyms in Hanoi that will meet your needs. With the TayHo neighborhood housing a large number of expats, let’s take a look at the selection of Hanoi gyms in TayHo. Ranging from cheap to pricey, basic to elaborate - you’ve got a lot to choose from in this neighborhood.
CROSSFIT TAY HO
Home of the only CrossFit in Hanoi, this gym is a home away from home for its members. Not your typical traditional gym - no ellipticals or Zumba here - CrossFit is considered “The Sport of Fitness”. Movements are constantly varied, performed at high intensity and functional. It is meant for everyone - of all shapes, sizes and fitness levels - and improves your overall health, physical fitness and mindset.
In simple words, CrossFit makes you fitter, better and stronger in a welcoming and fun environment.
CrossFit Tay Ho has members from over 25 countries who have bonded over tough workouts, camaraderie and a love of the sport. But CFTH (as it is fondly called) is more than challenging workouts and great results, it is a place to belong. For many members, CrossFit Tay Ho is where they found their place in Hanoi. Members not only train together, but spend time outside of the gym, and travel together. If you’re looking for a community in Hanoi, this might be the place for you.
Each class is run by a highly qualified coach who will help tailor each workout to you. Coaches are invested in your fitness journey and will follow up and check in with you on a regular basis. Group classes run at varying times throughout the day, from 5:00am to 8:00pm. On top of the group classes, CrossFit Tay Ho has an open gym area where members can do accessory and strength work on their own.
CFTH recently moved to a new location at 34 Dang Thai Mai. The space is newly constructed with all brand new equipment. We will be offering new classes and new merchandise with the same core values we have been cultivating for the last five years.
One former member reached out to share her thoughts on this Hanoi gym:
“I joined CrossFit Tay Ho when I was newly postpartum, incredibly self conscious, unfit and intimidated. It took me three times to be enticed inside and then...I never looked back. I have never experienced a gym or environment like it, it changed the way I view fitness and what a gym could be. The results will speak for themselves (fastest most obvious results I’ve ever achieved) but the thing you’ll fall in love with is the community and the people. Whatever other option you entertain, highly recommend adding CrossFit Tay Ho to it too, you won’t regret it!”
CrossFit can be intimidating to the uninformed. Take a look at this breakdown on what Crossfit is, and whether or not it is right for you!
THE FITNESS VILLAGE
The Fitness Village is a tranquil fitness space tucked away down a quiet alley in Tay Ho. This Hanoi Gym offers a range of classes suiting everyone’s goals. To start, they have a large selection of group fitness classes including HIIT classes, Zumba, Yoga & Pilates, Pump classes, Spin, and even guided meditation. These classes run at varying times all day long, from 6:30am to 7:50pm on most days. All of the classes are run by qualified instructors bringing tons of fitness knowledge. Members enjoy the large range of different classes and the selection of instructors who bring their own style and variation to class!
Aside from the group fitness class space The Fitness Village has a fully equipped, air conditioned & air purified gym with free weights and cardio machines, as well as a separate zone for calisthenics training. You can use this space on your own, or hire one of their three PTs to train you. The Personal Trainers at The Fitness Village are super knowledgeable and friendly. Each has their own unique style, but all believe in finding the right path to help their clients reach their goals.
According to a current trainer, one of the strongest points is the environment they’ve created. Whether it’s in the classes or the gym, all instructors and members are really welcoming and it doesn’t feel intimidating at all. Another little perk on joining The Fitness Village is that from April to October, members can relax by the peaceful swimming pool. It’s not meant for lap swimming, but definitely a lovely refresher on a hot summer day.
CALIFORNIA CENTURYON WEST POINT
Located inside the Somerset in a prime location in Tay Ho is a California Fitness. This chain of gyms in Vietnam caters to Vietnamese and foreigners in a clean and modern setting, and the Tay Ho branch is no different. The gym has a large selection of cardio machines (treadmills, ellipticals, stair climbers, upright/recumbent bikes), and lots of weight machines. There is a smaller section of free weights and dumbbells, and multiple rooms for group fitness classes. Group classes include yoga, dance, spinning and Les Mills Body classes.
The jury is out for this gym in Hanoi. People seem to be split down the middle and quite vocal about whether they love it or hate it. For Team ‘We Love California Centuryon’, members appreciate the range of classes, swimming pool, sauna, cold plunge pool, and cleanliness and upkeep of equipment. On Team ‘Not a Fan of California Centuryon’, people often comment on the crowded environment, loud pulsing music, confusion on membership costs, and lack of awareness of staff and trainers.
This seems to be a place to come and check out for yourself before deciding to join. Chances are you won’t be meeting your new BFFs while here, but if you want a good workout - whether solo or in a group - they can definitely meet your needs.
When it comes to membership, it seems like no two people have paid the same price! There are constant promotions and deals, and you can figure out a way to talk the price down if you have good haggling skills. Obviously, the longer you sign up for the cheaper the price will be. There are also typically people selling their memberships on many of the Hanoi Facebook Groups where you might be able to get a better deal.
Sidebar → I joined this gym for one reason. I needed a specific kind of treadmill called an Air Runner, and this is the only place around that had one! I ended up paying 13,000,000VND for 18 months (roughly 700,000VND a month). In hindsight, it seems like a lot for one machine, but what can you do! My experience with this gym is that I can get in, run, and get out. I put my headphones in so I don’t have to hear the music or chatter. No one has ever bothered me, and most of the interactions I’ve had with staff have been pleasant.
Another often sought after gym in Tay Ho is Top Gym on Au Co. You might have heard the bumping music as you walk by, or been impressed through the big windows filled with equipment. Three floors to be exact. This Hanoi gym has everything you need to get your workout on. They have all benches, machines, equipment, treadmills, and dumbbells, all new and well maintained. They also have two power racks with Olympic standard barbells. There is a kickboxing training space and lots of group classes, like zumba and yoga.
Most people are respectful and re-rack the weight. The staff speaks English, though sometimes they are not so attentive. The extra facilities are also a big selling point of this gym. It is air conditioned, has a steam room and sauna.
This is another gym with constant promotions and varying memberships. At certain times of the year they have specials. Some people have reported they spent 6,000,000 for the entire year while another person paid 4,800,000 for six months.
If you’re in the market for a no-frills fitness center in Hanoi, then Olympia Gym may be what you are looking for. At the end of To Ngoc Van, you’ll find this large gym with a lot of light. It has most of the things that you need to get a workout in - free weights, bench presses, ellipticals, bikes, machines, etc. In the summer they open their semi-outdoor pool (though it is not included in your membership and you’ll need to pay an additional 80k). It is simply a solo adventure as there are no trainers or group fitness classes.
If you join Olympia Gym, you need to manage your expectations because you are not getting a state of the art, well kept gym. The space is crowded with unused, old, or broken machines. The equipment is not maintained and it is not the cleanest of fitness centers.
What sets Olympia apart from other Tay Ho Gyms is the price. It is very affordable. There are varying membership options, but for the most part they seem to average at around 400,000k for unlimited access to the fitness center (some people buy memberships at 570,000k for 30 visits). It is also rarely crowded which is always a bonus. This gym is not pretentious and does not attract pretentious people. Lots of local Vietnamese use this gym. You are also able to hire your own trainer and bring them to the gym to train you. If you want fancy, this gym is likely not for you.
Fit24 has been a bit harder to find information on. It seems like the majority of people who go to this gym use it sparingly through the Wefit App. According to their website they have state of the art equipment with well planned structure that brings a positive experience to their clients. They have a variety of fitness classes like yoga and dance.
A few members from Hanoi Beautiful have commented on their experience at FIT24. People like their good mix of cardio and weight machines and wide range of classes. The gym itself is rarely crowded. A bonus is that they have really nice showers, a small sauna and comfortable chairs to chill out in after a workout.
There are six locations throughout Hanoi, and it seems as if your membership gets you access to all of the locations. This gym is another one with varying price structures. One person paid 16,000,000 for a year membership, while another paid 9,000,000. Similar to California Fitness, the price seems to go up or down based on your haggling skills.
Now you’ve got all the information needed about choosing a gym in Tay Ho, Hanoi. Take all these points into consideration, chat with your friends, and get your sweat on!