Getting fit for free in Prague
Getting fit in Prague doesn’t have to involve an expensive monthly gym membership. Here’s some activities that will cost only a few crowns or nothing at all.
When moving to a new city, it can take a while to discover where to go and what to do in your free time. If you’re trying to get fit, one of the first barriers is getting the motivation to get out and get active, when you don’t know where to go or what facilities are available to you.
Practicing sport and getting fit doesn’t have to cost much. While you can pay for a gym membership or golf course fees, there are plenty of facilities to use, or places to go, that are either free to use or cost only spare change.
So, whether it’s an outdoor gym session, a bike ride, a run or inline skate session- let’s take a look at how you can break a sweat in the Czech capital for free (or at least very little).
In recent years outdoor gyms have grown in popularity, with a number of new outdoor fitness facilities popping up in Prague. Many of Prague’s parks now have either an assault course or outdoor gym for anyone to use when they feel the need to work on their fitness. Most consist of equipment like pull-up bars, monkey bars and parallel bars to aid in calisthenic workouts (exercise where bodyweight is used as the main form of resistance). However, if you want to lift weights for free too, head to Rokytka in Prague 9, and you’ll find outdoor free weights as well as resistance machines, all for free.
Outdoor gym locations include:
Reigrovy Sady (Prague 2)
Folimanka (Prague 4)
Stromovka (Prague 7)
Rokytka (Prague 9)
Seifertova 45 (Prague 3)
One of the great benefits of running is, of course, the fact that you can do it pretty much anywhere. Depending on whether you want to run a short distance or train for a marathon, there’s pretty of places in Prague to take a morning, or evening, run. Some good parks close to the centre include: Reigrovy sady (~1km hilly loop – great for laps), Stromovka, Vitkov and Grebovka. If you prefer running off-road, there are plenty of ‘nature parks’, with a network of forestry trails, to choose from – the majority of which are easily accessible by public transport. See our ‘Prague’s green spaces’ articles for more info.
While the centre of Prague isn’t very cycling friendly, when it comes to commuting and the like, it does give access to some great cycling facilities and trails a little further out. Several of Prague’s nature parks are home to a network of good mountain bike trails, accessible either by riding or via train or metro. Road cyclists can find a network of quieter country roads only a short ride out of the centre, with fairly challenging accents out of the river valley. For more leisurely rides, the bike path running along the Vltava river gives you 30km+ of almost entirely uninterrupted cycling, away from city traffic. Don’t own a bike? Not to worry. Prague now has two major bike share schemes (and a third smaller one), as well as plenty of cycle hire shops, giving you access to affordable bike rental.
Especially popular on the Vltava bike path, inline skating is another great way to get fit in Prague. To experience several kilometres of smooth riverside tarmac (plus cafes and bars pitstops along the way), simply take a tram to Podolská vodárna and follow the bike path. And don’t worry, if you get too tired to make the return trip back to the tram, there are several tram stops within a 5 minute skate from the bike path most of the way along the riverside. There is further good inline skating to be found in Ladronka (Prague 6) and Stromovka (Prague 7). And, if you don’t have a pair of skates, there’s plenty of rental locations easily found via a quick Google search.
Longboarding may not be the first thing that springs to mind when thinking of the cobbled streets of Prague. But, with a little exploration, there’s some great parks and pathways, as well as hills for the more advanced downhill longboarder. Some places to check out include: the bike path running next to the Vltava, Centrální park in Stodůlky and the bike path from Krejcárek to Hlavní nádraží.
If you like to skateboard, ride a bmx or inline skate, there are a number of skateparks in the capital. Prague’s main facility, Mystic Skatepark is located on Štvanice island on the Vltava between Florenc and Holesovice. Another large skatepark, a set of concrete bowls, can be found in Gutovka. Other skateparks can be found in: Smichov (by the river) and Branik (near to the bike path).
With plenty of green spaces in Prague, there’s a whole bunch of opportunities for free-of-charge sporting activities. A game of football with mates? An impromptu quick-cricket match?
With a little creativity, breaking a sweat doesn’t have to cost you a penny, or a crown.
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