Distinguished location for a new method of exercising at Garuda Studios

Garuda Gym

Garuda Gym - Credit: Archant

Listed building that was once home to arts club and a 19th century poet is now the headquarters for classes that blend yoga, Pilates and dance

A new exercise studio in a listed building that used to house St John’s Wood Arts Club is offering the area an exercise system that is almost an artform in itself.

The Garuda Studio, just four minutes from St John’s Wood Tube, is the new headquarters of founder James D’Silva’s programme that incorporates a little bit of everything.

“Garuda is a fusion of yoga, Pilates and dance that’s known all over the world,” says manager Ali Beecham.

With the high ceilings, stained glass windows and spacious new facilities at the site, D’Silva is optimistic about the future of the popular programme.

“Garuda challenges you physically and mentally,” says D’Silva. “It’s a revolutionary way of exercising. We have created a beautiful studio in a historic, classical building. Garuda is a growing movement worldwide and we are here on your doorstep.”

Raised in Goa, India, before moving to England as a professional dancer, D’Silva has worked with hundreds of clients including celebrities such as Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow.

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Now he is ready to bring his expertise to customers in north London with a system of his own design.

Originally discovered on a historical walk through the area, D’Silva says that the new location for the studio is not only popular with customers but seems itself to have been made for the programme’s aesthetic appeal.

“It feels more like St John’s Wood chose me. It feels like home. I could not envisage Garuda headquarters anywhere else.”

The studio is also located in the building that was a former residence of 19th century poet Thomas Hood – a fact that furthers the tradition of artistry Garuda intends to build on.

As a crafted blend of yoga, Pilates and dance, The Garuda Studio and its methods offer a multitude of opportunities from matwork classes, private tuition and group classes that are designed for anyone from those with experience to beginners.

According to D’Silva and the teachers hand-selected for the new studio, Garuda is much more than the sum of parts: it is a holistic experience designed to transcend the limits of traditional exercise.

“Garuda is a journey of self-discovery, it is a process to body and mind improvement. Garuda will help you achieve the best results. There are no short cuts, but we can make the journey worthwhile and results achievable.”

Rather than a traditional system of exercise based on muscle growth or resistance training, Garuda is designed to promote strength, leanness and flexibility. With a maximum class size of five students, those interested in The Garuda Studio are able to experience personal attention and the social nature of exercise.


“So far, the customers here in St John’s Wood have been great,” Beecham says. “They’re looking after their bodies and have noticed what Garuda can do. We’ve been getting lots of recommendations from friends.”

For those looking for something different, The Garuda Studio might just prove the intelligent way to exercise.

The Garuda Studio is offering readers of the Ham&High a private one-to-one session on the Garuda Apparatus, a value of £70, for £40 along with a complimentary matwork class valued at £20.

Additionally, The Garuda Studio offers traditional Pilates, yoga and GYROTONIC© classes in addition to their own programmes.

More information about classes or the new studio in St John’s Wood can be found online at thegaruda.net or by calling 020 7483 4644.