Location: Tuan Toan Fitness Centre, 578 Cua Dai, Song Phong, Hoi An
Opening hours: 5.30 to 8.30am and 2pm to 8pm
Price: 50,000 VND (Approx £1.75)
I love finding these crazy backwoods gyms with no fancy equipment and plenty of heart and Tuan Toan Fitness Centre on Cua Dai street did not disappoint. With my new gym friend Sam in tow, we headed out through the torrential rain to find a gym. It was initially hard to find this place as it is set back off the street a little, but it is there. I have used the geotag from my photos to pinpoint it, so check the location above.
This really is a no frills gym and much of the equipment feels improvised or homemade. Check out the homemade tricep pulldown bar in the photos below. Other machines had things like bike chains for cables. I love that spirit of finding a way to make it work despite not having good equipment. Although having said that, this gym has more benches per client than anywhere on earth, except maybe Monorom Gym in Cambodia
. But in fairness, there is a good selection of other equipment too.
One strange quirk of this gym is that the weight plates only go upto 10kg, so something like leg press or deadlifts become kind of comical. The dumbbells only go to 25kg, but you can use the make your own. These top out at about 32kg, but with the plethora of benches and bars you should still be able to get a good workout.
The locals here were friendly, but seemed surprised to see tourists in their gym. You can find out why in the next post, but wont ruin the surprise. Whilst training here, we also got to meet the owner, who was the biggest guy I have seen in Vietnam. Even wearing a jumper he still looked cut. This is us. No filter on this one.
This gym is a little basic, but if you have a little imagination you can get a decent workout. This gym has:
- Dumbbells up to 32.5kg
- Adjustable dumbbells
- Adjustable benches
- Squat rack
- Barbell bench press
- Barbell incline bench press
- Barbell decline bench press
- Shoulder press machine
- Leg press machine
- Leg extension machine
- Lat pulldown
- Hack squat machine
- T-bar row machine
- Pull up bars
- Dips / leg raise bar
- Easy bar
- Hammer curl bar
You are not going to find any cardio or functional strength training equipment here. You couldn’t be further from hitting a tire with a sledgehammer.
Who is it for? When I was here there was only shirtless local guys training here. As such, and because of the other branch of this gym that I found, I wouldn’t recommend this gym for women. Ooops I let it slip. There is another branch of this gym in this town and it could not be more different to this one. Without saying too much, I would recommend that everyone train at the other branch of this gym, as it is the same price. However, you can’t find it on google maps so you will need to read my next post to find out where this gym is.
Tips: Also, find out who the famous owner of this gym chain turns out to be in the next post!