Add these activities to your fitness routine, stat.
For nearly everyone, the pandemic was a great disruptor of daily life. And the great catalyst of viral trends. Though we’ve grown fatigued from certain lockdown practices in the kitchen and online, there seems to be one trend that has solidified into a permanent part of our lives—playtime fitness.
Referring to physical fitness activities that are also fun and recreational, these alternatives to more traditional repetitive workouts involve a level of play and enjoyment. Do these solo or with friends, anytime, anywhere—no gym memberships necessary. Below are five playtime fitness trends to permanently add to your routine and maybe your social calendars.
Cycling gained massive popularity over the last two years. Perhaps the biggest key to its success is that more than just a sport or workout, cycling is also a form of active mobility. What better way to save time and money while staying fit than the two-wheeled invention that only requires the charge of your own two legs? Bicycles foster an incredible sense of community and the ability to customize one’s bike to your own personality and preferences. Group rides offer a way to travel with your friends and get stronger at the same time. This also creates a mutualistic relationship between cyclists and the establishments they visit.
For the newbie cyclists looking for great spots to bike without the stress of sun and traffic, consider heading to Marikina River Park, where tree-covered pathways span the perimeter of the river on both sides. Anyone looking to go coffee shop-hopping with a group of friends can take to Makati and BGC, where streetside cafes and restaurants are plenty and one can feel safe on the main roads with protected bike lanes.
Roller Skating and Rollerblading
Are you longing for the bright-colored boots that let you fly through the streets when you were young? Lucky for you, one of the great comebacks of the pandemic has been roller skating and rollerblading.
This fun, nostalgia-filled activity seemed to be the joyful pick-me-up many people needed after enduring seemingly endless lockdowns. All kinds of people are dawning their brightest skates and taking to town to cruise the streets and practice their moves with friends. The pandemic also gave rise to roller skate squads, which gave color to the empty Manila streets. In fact, the activity became so popular in 2020 that the world experienced a shortage of roller skates.
Though it’s common to enjoy a nice day out skating at a park, roller skaters might enjoy meeting fellow enthusiasts at roller rinks in Playland, Quezon City, and Roller Disco in Malabon.
Skateboarding never truly went out of fashion, but perhaps it’s more that the original generation of skateboard kids in the ’90s outgrew the past-time. Well, thanks to the pandemic, people of all ages are returning to their boards as something that’s able to be practiced both in smaller spaces and outdoors, while making use of one’s natural surroundings.
While Bonifacio Global City remains a primary location to skate if you’re near the central business district, it’s worth venturing into other well-known spots like Manila Skate Park, the sloping streets of San Juan, or the steps in front of Manila Central Post Office. New venues are popping up more and more as well, like The Bike Playground in Quezon City or the skate park behind Ayala Malls Circuit.
When people think about jump rope, either one of two images comes up – practicing double-dutch in the school’s yard with friends or a gym workout circuit. The pandemic’s iteration of the jump rope craze is a little bit of both. Despite being an exercise that doesn’t require too much space or equipment, trainers say jump-roping is a great way to build stamina and endurance.
Thanks to TikTok and Instagram touting the activity as their lockdown cardio alternative, the new wave of jump ropers are getting creative with their routines and posting them on social media. Many are learning intricate combinations and fancy new tricks to perform with their ropes.
Balance boards started out as a compact, indoor alternative to sports like surfing or skiing so that users could practice their skills when it wasn’t possible to head outdoors. Since then, it’s been used for a whole range of exercises, from rehabilitating foot or leg injuries to a workout all on its own. Balance boards are a great way to work on the core, reflexes, coordination, and, of course, balance.
There are all different shapes and sizes of balance boards, depending on what you want to practice. One example of a variation is a wobble board, which looks something like a large spinning top. Anyone who doesn’t have enough open area to spare at home can take up this as a hobby and exercise since balance boards don’t require too much space to use.