Exercising and getting into shape doesn’t need to be costly. In fact, there are plenty of ways to work out with other people without spending a dime. Sure, you can work out at home by following a free class on YouTube, but there are other more enjoyable ways to exercise—often at no charge to you.
For instance, practicing outdoor yoga, going ice skating, playing tennis or joining a Health & Wellness group on Meetup are just a few fun ideas for you to try.
Additionally, activities such as these often require little to no equipment. Any equipment you do need you may already own or be able to purchase secondhand. For more ideas on the different ways you can work out for free, read the sections below.
Whether you’re an avid yogi or you’re ready to practice yoga for the first time, there are plenty of ways to experience the health benefits of yoga without practicing at home or paying for an expensive studio membership.
During the spring and summer months, for instance, many local yoga instructors teach donation-based classes on the beach, in public parks, at apple orchards or botanical gardens, and on the patios of local breweries or distilleries. If the class is donation-based, you pay what you can—or nothing at all. To attend, you simply need an inexpensive yoga mat, a water bottle and the desire to practice yoga. At Walmart, for example, yoga mats are available for as low as $6.50.
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To find an outdoor yoga class in your area, perform a Facebook search for “free outdoor yoga classes near me”. You’ll likely find a variety of free classes in your area, or in a nearby city. If you live in a city such as Miami, San Diego or Los Angeles, these outdoor yoga opportunities are likely available to you year-round. However, many free or donation-based indoor classes are available throughout the year as well.
To search for an indoor class, perform a Facebook search for “free yoga classes near me,” or create a Meetup account to search for free activities in your area.
According to the United States Tennis Association (USTA), there are approximately 250,000 tennis courts in the U.S. Therefore, you more than likely have at least one free, the public court just miles from where you live. Free courts are often available to the public at local high schools, middle schools and parks.
To find a free court near you, you can search the Global Tennis Network website, which allows you to search for indoor and outdoor courts by zip code. Plus, you’ll be able to determine whether the court is open to the public and whether you need to pay an admission fee to play.
If you’re new to playing tennis, you can easily learn the rules of the game by watching YouTube videos and other online tutorials. Additionally, the website of the USTA has plenty of tips and instructions available on its website. If you don’t own a tennis racket, however, you can purchase them for as low as $14 at Walmart, with a three-pack set of tennis balls selling for as low as $2.
Try Ice Skating
While most indoor ice rinks require a small admission fee, many public rinks are available to visitors at no charge. These rinks are often found at local parks, schools or community centers. To skate at these free rinks, you simply need a pair of ice skates and a set of warm winter clothes. At Walmart, for instance, ice skates sell for as low as $20 for children and $30 for adults.
As another option, you may rent a pair of ice skates, purchase them secondhand from an online classifieds website, or borrow them from another user.
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However, free outdoor ice rinks are typically only available in regions with colder winter climates, such as Minnesota, New York or Colorado. To find a free public ice rink near you, visit the website of your city’s Park and Recreation Board.
Get Free Passes for a Local Gym
Gym memberships can be costly, but there are several ways to work out at privately-owned gyms without paying a dime. To do so, visit your local gym when it offers free classes to the public. These may include free yoga, Pilates or Zumba classes. To learn more, simply follow your local privately-owned gym on Facebook to stay up-to-date on any free public events.
As another option, many public and privately-owned gyms provide non-members with free passes for a designated amount of time. For instance, many local YMCA and LA Fitness facilities provide non-members with free five-day trials. Additionally, the following gyms offer free trials:
- Anytime Fitness, CorePower Yoga, Crunch Fitness, YogaWorks, XSport Fitness, Pure Barre, Life Time Fitness and Genesis Health Clubs provide qualifying non-members with one free seven-day trial.
- 24-Hour Fitness and participating Sports Club locations offer free five-day passes.
- Blink Fitness, Gold’s Gym, Equinox and YouFit locations provide non-members with free one-day trials.
In addition to these free trials, companies such as UFC Gym, ClassPass and CKO Kickboxing provide non-members with free passes and access to their facilities for a specific amount of time.
If you own a pair of comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots, taking a hike is an excellent way to burn calories without paying a dime. Plus, hiking reduces your risk of hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, obesity and arthritis. If you suffer from anxiety, hiking can even help you to feel more relaxed.
To find a hiking path near you, download the free AllTrails smartphone app to locate a nearby path, read reviews from other hikers, and get driving directions to the trail.
Join a Local Club
Even a strenuous workout is more enjoyable when you’re surrounded by other people. Therefore, joining a local fitness group on Meetup is an excellent way to work out and have fun at the same time.
To get started, simply create a free Meetup account to search for clubs in your area. After you create an account, browse through Meetup’s Health & Wellness category or try searching for “fitness clubs near me”. You’ll likely find upcoming events for hiking, biking, yoga, dance and more. Then, join the groups that sound interesting to you and RSVP to any of their upcoming events. Many events are available free of charge.
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