National Quality Awards Ireland Active The Dartry Health Club

I’m delighted to share that The Dartry Health Club were awarded National Quality Standard Outstanding award at this year’s annual White Flag ceremony which were held in Johnstown Estate.

The country’s best gyms, trainers and health clubs were honoured at the inaugural National Health & Fitness Awards on Friday in a gala luncheon. With more than 400 entries from gyms, trainers, experts and health clubs nationwide the event really signified the size and importance of the fitness industry in Ireland.

Sponsored by fitness nutrition brand NUTRAMINO®, the awards recognised top performers in the Irish health and exercise industry.

The awards, hosted by fitness blogger and TV presenter Vogue Williams, took place at Mansion House Dublin.

The big winner of the day was Iconic Health Clubs who won an impressive five awards including the award for Group Operator of the Year;  Gym Team of the Year (Icon Health Club in Dublin 2); Leisure/Health Club of the Year (The Dartry Health Club in Dublin 6);  Personal Trainer of the Year (Dominika Wolek) as well as Regional Club of the Year (Dublin) for 1escape health club, D7

Pictured Sue Langley, and Sean Gavin from Iconic Health Clubs, The Dartry Health Club winner of Leisure Gym / Health Club of the Year, at the NUTRAMINO Health & Fitness Awards 2018 hosted by Vogue Williams.

Pictured Sue Langley, and Sean Gavin from Iconic Health Clubs, The Dartry Health Club winner of Leisure Gym / Health Club of the Year, at the NUTRAMINO Health & Fitness Awards 2018 hosted by Vogue Williams.

Gary Twohig, General Manager of NUTRAMINO® said the awards reflected the best of the best in the fitness industry.

‘The winning facilities, teams, programmes and content are setting the standards in the health and fitness industry in Ireland and serve as a great fit with our brand which has raised the expectations of consumers for active nutrition products.’

The Dartry Health Club part of the Iconic Health Club Group wins Leisure Gym / Health Club of the Year

The Dartry Health Club part of the Iconic Health Club Group wins Leisure Gym / Health Club of the Year

Ciara Lefroy, Director of Iconic Health Clubs said “We are over the moon to have won so many categories at the National Health and Fitness Awards.  We want to say a massive thank you to everyone who voted for us.  We are so proud of our teams who work so hard every single day to encourage people to make health and fitness part of their lives.  I know this truly means the world to them”

The Iconic Health Club Team celebrate their success at The National Nutramino Health and Fitness Awards

The Iconic Health Club Team celebrate their success at The National Nutramino Health and Fitness Awards

In addition Iconic Health Clubs also won:

Silver Award:  Customer Service, Iconic Health Club Group

Silver Award:  Gym Team of the Year, The Dartry Health Club.

Silver Award:  Club Manager of the Year, Gabrielle Finglas of 1escape health club

Silver Award:  Guinness World Record Social Media Campaign for 1escape health club

Bronze Award:  Club Manager of the Year, Sean Gavin of The Dartry Health Club

Winners also Included

    • The Best Hotel Facility (sponsored by Fitdist Sports): Breaffy Club & Spa in Mayo
    • Best Leisure/Health Club: The Dartry Health Club, in D6
    • Health & Fitness Blogger of the Year:  The Healthy Tart
    • Best Local Authority/Community Health & Fitness Club (sponsored by Expert Leisure Supplies): Coral Leisure Monaghan.
    • Gym Team of the Year: Icon Health Club on Camden Street, D2
    • Best Corporate Health & Fitness Category (sponsored by The KeepWell Mark): Alexion Ireland.
    • The Industry Contribution Award (sponsored by Ireland Active): Susan Grady, CEO of K Leisure
    • Regional Gym of the Year winners: 1escape Health Club (Dublin), The Breaffy Club & Spa (Connacht/Ulster) Clonmel Park Leisure Centre (Munster)
    • Personal Trainer of the Year: Dominika Wolek of Icon Health Club, D2

Our December challenge is now live and a great way to keep you motivated over the festive party season!  You can register via our mobile app and track all your workouts.  You will then be in with a chance to win some great prizes and earn points!


Is there somebody who you feel deserves recognition in the club? Is there an ICON amongst us? Have they achieve amazing results or just made your day when you see them? Now is your chance to vote…


A4 awards poster 2019-01

‘Tis the most wonderful time of the year and we would love it if you could join us for our Annual Members Christmas Party. Celebrate with your team and enjoy some festive fun, mingling and drinks as we host our Christmas Party.

dartry party

IHRSA Conference 17

This month I attended (IHRSA) Conference in the Clayton hotel where I had the opportunity meet and see many of the leading operators in the fitness world. The keynote speakers and panels discussed the latest trends and innovations as well as promoting the importance of staying active to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

While we hope to introduce some of these ideas towards the end of this year and in to 2020 we have been moving in the right direction. Group fitness class will continue to grow in 2020 with a demand in shorter 30 minute classes. We have just added Les Mills Grit classes in September and have been slowly adding 30 minute HIIT spin into the timetable. Expect to see more of these in our first timetable in the New Year.

Coffee machine

We have invested in a new Nespresso machine for our reception area. There a number of strengths and flavours to choose from while there is also a hot water function for herbal or black tea. We have also reduced the price with a coffee just €2 while a cup of tea is €1.00. These will also be added to the rewards scheme from November.


Have you checked out our new rewards items? You can now redeem sports bags, cotton glute bands, earbud earphones, resistance bands and cotton towels. You can claim these and many more rewards via our mobile app, Iconic Health Clubs.

Save the date

Come join us on December 14th for our annual members Christmas Party. We will be hosting the event in The Iveagh Garden Hotel on Dawson Street. Feel free to bring a friend with you to introduce to the team. Ask the team at reception for further details.

Congratulations to our member Joy Tracy.

In April this year, Joy was approached by a friend who suggested that she take part in a charity cycle in aid of Little Blue Heroes, on 1st August from Dublin to Cork, with an overnight in Templemore.  Joy had some reservation about agreeing but she felt that she needed a challenge, so she signed up.   To help her prepare Joy increased her training at the Dartry Health Club to include more spin classes, with a mix of Body Pump, core strength, Pilates and yoga.

As the date got nearer, Joy’s friend became concerned that she was not doing any road training, but Joy assured him that her training at the gym was sufficient, and so she completed the cycle on her trusted hybrid, drawing attention from the other cyclists, who were convinced that there was a battery on her bike.

“I can say, without reservation, that thanks is due to the trainers at the gym for their encouragement and motivation to my training, in helping me to achieve my goal”, said Joy

Congratulations Joy!  We’re all very proud of you and your fantastic achievement.


core classes in dublin 6

We are delighted to announce that our new class timetable will start next week.  We have added some really great classes including the world’s best HIIT class, GRIT. We have put together an article all about this class which you can read in our news section.

It’s been called the closest thing to an exercise pill. And while it might take a bit more effort, there is now no doubt at all that high-intensity interval training is just what the doctor ordered.

Anyone who follows the latest in fitness news knows that HIIT is a hit. A big hit. But high-intensity interval training is much more than a fad – it is a scientifically backed way to build cardiovascular fitness, and research is revealing plenty more health benefits it can bestow. Here are five of the top researched reasons to put HIIT on your own workout list:

  • HIIT improves lean body mass and maximal oxygen consumption, while drastically cutting the risk of heart disease.
  • HIIT is extremely effective at cutting stubborn and unhealthy tummy fat.
  • In both young (18 to 30) and older (65 to 80) exercisers, a major study showed HIIT had by far the greatest activation of muscle and fat-burning capacity, when compared with other types of exercise.
  • HIIT has been shown to be much better than other workouts for producing excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC), meaning your body continues to use oxygen and burn fat long after you’ve stopped exercising.

There’s no doubt that high-intensity interval training (HIIT) drives amazing results. Several studies, conducted with sedentary adults, provide compelling evidence that HIIT can rapidly build fitness. However, there’s been nothing to demonstrate how HIIT affects those of us who are already fit and active. Until now.
The Les Mills Lab teamed up with Dr. Jinger Gottschall of Penn State, to explore how a specific form of HIIT training, like LES MILLS GRIT™, can transform the fitness of regular exercisers.

The research team measured aerobic fitness, body composition, upper and lower body strength, and cardiovascular risk factors, at the beginning and end of the six-week trial.

After six weeks, those who did LES MILLS GRIT showed a much greater increase in cardiovascular fitness, and a drop in triglycerides, which is the amount of fat we have in our blood. There was a startling reduction in cardiovascular disease risk factors and their strength gains were significant – leg strength improved by 15.7 percent, and back strength increased by an astonishing 21.9 percent. Most impressively, the group who did LES MILLS GRIT reduced their bodyfat by 2.1 percent and dropped their waist circumference 2.5cm.

In another study, Gottschall followed professional athletes. A team of soccer players substituted their usual seven hours of off-season training with just four hours and added two LES MILLS GRIT workouts. Despite decreasing their training time by two hours per week, the soccer players saw significant changes in both body composition and fitness levels.

Together these studies prove that 30 minutes of LES MILLS GRIT twice a week, will create significant changes in your fitness and body composition, lower the risk factors for cardiovascular disease, and smash through your fitness plateau. For a fit and active population, HIIT is extremely time efficient.

“For those people with a good base level of cardiovascular fitness and strength, HIIT will help you to keep getting fitter,” explains Bryce Hastings, Les Mills Head of Research. “For athletes, it can reduce training time and still improve performance.”

Hastings adds that the findings of this second study are not only relevant for soccer players. “It is a very real prescription for maximizing competition performance and minimizing training time across a range of competitive sports.” What’s more, the variety provided with LES MILLS GRIT workouts, could potentially reduce the risk of overuse injuries that can come from traditional conditioning such as distance running.

With this research front of mind the message is clear: it’s not the volume but the intensity that fuels change.

Two 30-minute LES MILLS GRIT sessions a week is all it takes. You’ve now got your prescription, what are you waiting for?

Have you signed up for our September challenge yet?

It’s still not too late and we know it will help you to stay motivated and on track.  Not only that but you will earn points for joining and attending and we have some really great prizes now added to our member rewards prizes including sports bags, resistance bands, ear buds and much much more.


Our new and approved Swim Ireland Swim programme has been a huge success . Over the past number of years we have seen our swim programme go from strength to strength including our Junior Lifesaving programme.


Junior Lifeguards in training at The Dartry Health Club


Our continuous on-going staff training with swim Ireland which has included their new Swim Programme, child protection training, first aid training, lifesaving training and pool chemical training ensures that we are delivering one the best environment for your child to learn to swim in Ireland.






From October onwards the following will be introduced into our Swim Programme:

      • Our swimming programme and private lessons will only be available to members.
      • Swim Passport for all kids to track and keep their certspassport
      • Parents will be able to check online their kids progress on a weekly basis
      • In house trained designated liaison officer children first safeguarding (Dave Tyrell)
      • Lessons will break from 21st December 2019 to 6th Jan 2020
      • Lessons will break from 1st Aug 2020 to the 7th September 2020
      • A freeze fee of €10 will be charged to DD if you wish to freeze lessons during term time
      • From 1st October 2019 Prices will increase to Members €50 p/m

We wish to thank you for your continued support with our swim programme and we look forward to seeing the kids progress further as they learn a hugely valuable life skill.

On behalf of the team at The Dartry Health Club, I’d like to welcome all our members back after the summer.  We’ve been very busy behind the scenes getting ready for your return and we are really excited about seeing you all back at the club.

Club maintenance

Throughout the summer we carried out a number of upgrades and essential works to the club.
The showers areas in both changing rooms have had new ceiling tiles fitted with new LED lights being fitted. The shampoo dispensers and shelves in the male changing room have been replaced also.

We always strive to have the cleanest and best facilities possible for our members. Often we have to put investment into areas that might not be visible at first glance to our members but which are hugely valuable to our member experience.  One such example of this was in August when invested €8k on 3 tonnes of sand to pool filtration s

Price changes

Over the last two years the business has invested over €750,000 in upgrading the club to bring it to it’s full premium potential.  Having been with the club myself for over 11 years I am so thrilled to see the club excelling in terms of the value we offer and the experience for our members. As of September the fee for new members has been increased, inline with our sister club at €80 per month. Current members will not be effected by this price increase and can still avail of their current rate.  This is a very positive step for the club and it’s future and I am so proud to be involved in it’s continued success.

National Quality Standard

In August we completed our Annual Audit for the National Quality Standard for health clubs. This rigorous audit ensures we consistently adhere to only the highest standard in health club management, safety, hygiene and customer service. We are confident that once again this year we will achieve the Outstanding award for our three clubs.

Class timetable

Our fitness manager Alex has just completed our new class timetable which is due to start from September 16th. We received some valuable feedback from our member surveys and I’m delighted to announce that we will be launching Les Mills Grit from this September. These HIIT classes are broken into three categories which are Grit Strength, Grit Athletic and Grit Cardio. Our trainers have been studying GRIT for the last few months and can’t wait to introduce it to your workout. Make sure to book in for these classes through our mobile app, Iconic Health Clubs which is available on Android and IOS. In the meantime here’s a quick glimpse at our new class GRIT and why we believe it is the best HIIT class in the world.

National Fitness Day 2019

On September 26th we will be running eight additional classes as part of National Fitness Day 2019. The initiative is to encourage more people, to get more active, more often. These classes will be open to both members and guests and bookings can be made at reception from September 23rd.  So grab a friend and colleague and bring them down on National Fitness Day.

Staff Changes

I would like to welcome two new staff membersto the team. We have a fourth Dave who is joining the fitness team. Dave Ryan has been working in the industry for a few years now but has wanted to join the team at Iconic Health clubs for some time now and we are delighted to have him on board.

We would also like to welcome Pedro Candido from Sao Paolo to our club care team.

Finally, would also like to congratulate our trainer Suzanne Cantrell who is on maternity leave. She gave birth to her daughter Aoibheann earlier this month and both mum and baby are doing great.