1. #1

    Shoreditch London - The Paragon Gym

    Address: The Basement, 6 Boundary Street, Shoreditch, London
    Postcode: E2 7JE
    Country: United Kingdom

    Website: Here



    We believe that it is necessary to participate in some form of physical activity in order to live a better quality of life. Exercise stimulates the body and can also help develop the mind. People with a higher level of fitness are better able to cope with the stresses of daily life by feeling energised, more confident and full of vitality.

    The physical benefits of fitness include increased muscular strength and endurance, stamina, suppleness, balance, co-ordination, improved muscle tone and posture. Exercise also helps to build and maintain a stronger immune system, lowering the risk of heart disease and other associated illnesses.

    The mental and psychological benefits include increased motivation, willpower, concentration, confidence, a sense of achievement, and a better self image leading to positive state of mind. All these components form a part of an essence of total well being and happiness for life!

    Martial arts training can offer all the benefits of regular exercise whilst allowing us to pursue goals and targets specific to our personal development and growth; mental, physical and often spiritual. It takes us on a journey of self-knowledge and awareness leading to a better understanding of the space we occupy and how to make the most of it. Martial Arts leads us to a higher state of awareness. It helps us to be more alert, allowing us to anticipate, be more decisive, and take positive actions which help us to shape and determine our own destinies.


    The Paragon way was founded and developed by John Lawson, world kickboxing champion, and his two brothers Stuart and Alex. His techniques have been distilled into an effective hybrid training system.

    Paragon seeks to make the martial disciplines more accessible to the public by focusing on the positive elements.

    Enjoy the challenge of learning the martial way of the Paragon Gym, in a relaxed and friendly environment. Non or light-contact kickboxing is an ideal discipline and form of exercise for those looking for an exciting alternative to the traditional fitness gym.

    Instructor: John Lawson (and various others - see website)
    Cost: 8 per session, or course fees which vary between 80 for 12 lessons and 100 for 16 lessons, plus a 15 registration fee upon completion of the 'beginners course'.

    There are various classes, all one hour long - three from 18:15 until 21:15 from Monday to Thursday (different ability levels for each), a light sparring class on Friday at 1
    Last edited by slideyfoot; 10/04/2006 5:55am at .

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    London, UK
    A friend of mine trained there some years ago and liked the whole "atmosphere" the Lawson bros have at Paragon.
    I have heard very good things about the place - the only negative thing I was told was that there was a lot of dykes training & instructing at the gym.

  3. #3
    pachanga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    kickboxing hobbyist
    "the only negative thing I was told was that there was a lot of dykes training & instructing at the gym."

    You mean lesbians? Why is that a negative thing? Why would you even care either way? Do they make straight people feel unwelcome?

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Trad Ju Jitsu
    Paragon is well spoken of by a friend of mine, Trad JJ 2nd Dan. He no longer lives close by and has gone the BJJ route (Blue Belt); still, he holds the Lawson bros in high esteem so that's good enough for me. I had thought about going myself but I had enough to occupy myself with....

    The second point, as part of my progresssion to Dan Grade, I sought extra training at a Gay club (I had a lot of choice, the options were many miles away) and, of course, someone grabbed my bum and other little provocative gestures. I ignored all this and just considered it a minor distraction on the way to my goal. Eventually, I was the token Straight in the corner and had no other problems.

    I had 2 different experiences with Gay women. One refused to train with me but this was more a reflection that I had less knowledge and she didn't want to go backwards to teach me. I accepted this (as if I fucking had a choice) but eventually overtook her. The second women did not want to train with me either (I could see this) but acted in the spirit of co-operative progress (after all, I paid my mat fee) and showed me quite of a lot of the syllabus. Subsequently (and much later) the first woman vouched her opinion that the club was "heterophobic" - her words - but she had long since fallen out with the sensei and needed the support of my club(s) to get her Dan.

    Simply put, prejudice works both ways.


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