British Military Fitness was founded in April 1999 by Major Robin Cope and Serjeant Harry Sowerby as an alternative form of group fitness training to gyms.
The idea was, and still is, to get people of all fitness abilities outdoors training in parks, with motivation provided by military trained instructors. While many people refer to BMF as a boot camp, it was never the intention to make BMF an intimidating, hard out boot camp. Instead the aim was always for us to give everyone a fun and effective form of training using the highly professional skills learnt in the military to get people fit.
In April 1999, British Military Fitness had its first class in Hyde Park, London. The first session saw just three people turn up. But week by week, the numbers grew as the people being trained told their friends and work colleagues about how great, and fun a BMF work out was, others simply walked up in the park and asked to join in.
By the time we had reached our first winter, BMF had 200 members but was contemplating closing for the winter months. The members’ pure passion indicated that they wanted to continue training through the dark, cold months and that has been the case ever since!
BMF pretty quickly spread across London as people asked for classes to be set up in parks near them. Now we have over 400 classes in more than 145 locations all across the UK, and turned 15 years old this year.
We have developed a ‘civilian friendly’ version of physical exercise (‘phys’) used to improve and maintain the fitness levels of the British Army, Navy and RAF - some of the fittest individuals on the planet.
As the military need to conduct ‘phys’ wherever they may find themselves, it has evolved highly effective group fitness training programmes. Very little equipment is required other than body weight (either your own or that of a partner) to perform a wide range of individual, partner and team speed, strength, agility and stamina exercises – all tried and tested by the military.
We often get asked - am I fit enough do do a BMF class? The answer is YES.
We understand that our classes are only effective and fun if you’re exercising at the right ability level for you. This is why we divide all class participants into three main ability groups:
At our larger venues we sub-divide the groups further still, so that everyone gets the most appropriate workout for their fitness level. The numbers on your bibs also help the instructor to personally encourage and congratulate you on your effort, and ensure that you’re doing every exercise correctly.
Whichever group you join at a British Military Fitness class – you’ll be guaranteed an effective workout with people with a similar level of fitness. Every week, you’ll work hard, have fun and make tangible progress that you’ll be able to see and feel.
If you've still got some questions for us you can have a look at our FAQs, or alternatively give our membership team a call on 020 8996 2220.
We encourage everyone, from exercise rookies to fitness veterans, to give BMF a go. This is why your first class is free. Sign up here.
July 23rd, 2015
We understand that keeping children entertained over the summer holidays can be a mammoth task so we’re delighted to be teaming up with NHS Change4Life and ukactive to offer fun, FREE, family fitness sessions at 42 parks across the UK, including London, Yorkshire and across Scotland. Bring your families along and get involved in the free BMF…
July 22nd, 2015
It’s a family affair! The Udeen’s from Brighton say working out together on the beach has changed their lives When Sian Udeen’s eldest daughter, Jenny, was encouraged to up her fitness regime by a work colleague in 2011, she decided to give British Military Fitness (BMF) a go on the beach in Brighton. Not long…
July 22nd, 2015
With summer here we’re well into holiday season and we notice a far bigger emphasis than any other time of year for people wanting to alter their body composition in one way or another. For males it might be bigger biceps and a six pack, for females it is usually to be more toned around…