Fitness in Cape Town
Living between a mountain and a sea means that hiking, trail running and rock-climbing are easy to access and free of charge, as are the various water sports connected with the nearby ocean. Slightly off-beat options also exist for a minimal price, including capoeira, muay tai, and salsa.
Regardless of what method expats choose, keeping fitness levels where they should be is easy in a city with ideal weather conditions and so many options.
Keeping fit in Cape Town
There are two main gym brands operating in the city: Virgin Active and Planet Fitness.
Virgin has flagship branches at Claremont, Greenpoint and Constantia with gym and weights gear complimented by swimming pool, spa facilities, varied classes such as spinning and boxercise, and healthy eateries to enjoy after the workout.
A recent niche entrant is the women-only Curves gym, with several branches across the city. In general, gym memberships cost from 250 ZAR per month, although many people join through their medical aid membership, in which case there is an initial gym joining fee and thereafter attendance is free.
The Cape’s roads are popular with cyclists despite the fact that there are no cycle lanes and plenty of unlicensed drivers. On weekends the scenic drives are dotted with riders, especially along Chapman’s Peak and around the Winelands. The best way to find a group is to join Pedal Power – the cycle advocacy group – and source a local club from their web site. Alternatively, visit a local bike shop, of which there are many.
The biggest chain is Cyclelab with cycle emporia at Canal Walk and Westlake in Tokai. Mountain bikers have plenty of options, with good routes on Table Mountain and lots of downhill in Tokai; not to mention countless routes in the mountains of the Winelands. Visit Thehubsa.co.za for more information.
There are many yoga studios in the City Bowl, and standards of instruction are high. From classical styles like Bikram to Ashtanga, to contemporary Power Yoga; from one-on-one teaching to large classes, expats interested in keeping fit this way can find an instructor willing to bend over backwards for you. Check out Yogazone.co.za, Anandakutir.org.za andCityrock.co.za/yoga.php
A popular option for those needing external motivation to stay fit is Bootcamp, which puts its members through a vigorous fitness program in a conscript-like military environment that is both highly effective and inexplicably popular.
Squash and Tennis
Squash is a popular sport in Cape Town, with competitive league play in the winter months. Tennis clubs are similarly plentiful. Contact Western Province tennis for details: Wptennis.co.za