Playing in all of our heads is the theme song to Jaws. As the unbearable heat slowly rolls around the corner, we find the music gets louder and louder. Pretty soon, clothing will be minimal and let’s face it ladies and gentlemen, it is crunch time when it comes to shedding the few extra pounds we all put on over winter. For me personally, going to the gym became a chore that I loathed. I needed to get innovative if I wanted to get fit, so I searched other avenues. What I found can be summed up in three words: Yellow Dragon Stadium.
Yellow Dragon Stadium (黄龙体育馆), one of the biggest stadiums in China, can be your very own country club. The resources are plentiful and the prices are affordable. Back in your respective countries, taking tennis lessons or playing squash may have been out of reach, but here in China, put your guilt aside and learn to take advantage of things such as these!
Yellow Dragon Stadium. Photo: images.sports.cn
1) Dragon Tennis ClubView In Map
With its first-rate courts and trained English-speaking tennis instructors, a morning lesson at the Dragon Tennis Club can be the perfect way to start your day.
I stumbled upon the Tennis Club a few months back while exploring the Yellow Dragon Stadium. I have always wanted to take lessons so I popped in to get some information. To my surprise, the prices were actually reasonable (even on a teacher’s salary)! The breakdown for outdoor court prices is as follows:
08:30-11:00: 40 RMB
11:00-17:00: 60 RMB
17:00-10:00: 70 RMB
Saturday and Sunday
Daily Rate: 70 RMB
An additional 25 RMB is needed to turn the lights on during evening lessons. Indoor courts run at 100 RMB from 08:30-17:00 and 130 RMB from 17:00-22:00.
Prices of the tennis instructors vary from 100-200 RMB/hour. If you prefer a coach who is proficient in English, I highly recommend Yang Yang who has been playing tennis for 10 years. Not only is Yang Yang a fabulous coach who will be sure to give you the work out you desire, but he charges just 100 RMB/hour. If you want to bring your friends along for some added motivation, just add 50 RMB per person!
Add: 1 Yellow Dragon Road, Hangzhou
Tel: 0571 876 32777
Coach Yang Yang: 136 5571 6018
If you find that the court prices are a little steep at the Dragon Tennis Club, feel free to call Yang Yang’s personal mobile included above and ask for the lesson to be held at the courts located on the Yuquan campus of Zhejiang University. Just a five minute bike ride from the Dragon Tennis Club, these courts although not as nice, certainly come cheaper. From 07:00-10:00, they run at just 20 RMB; from 17:00-21:00 it costs 40 RMB.
Next on the list is squash, a sport that often goes unrecognized as a valid weight loss tool by many. This sport is not only fun and enjoyable, but it is also one of the most effective one-hour workouts one can partake in. It is said that playing one hour of squash can lead you to burn anywhere between 700 and 1,000 calories. Most notably, squash is said to tone your arms, legs, and core more than any other sport. It is also a great way to improve both your cardiovascular fitness and your aerobic fitness due to the incredibly fast-paced nature of the game.
Squash can be played year round as a result of the courts being indoors. Typically indoor courts mean higher prices but do not fear, squash courts at the Yellow Dragon Sports Center run at incredibly low prices. Located right around the corner from the driving range, the courts run at 40 RMB/hour from 07:00 to 18:00 and 60 RMB/hour from 18:00-22:00. If you want to try playing a couple times first before purchasing a racket, you can rent one from the club for only 20 RMB.
Tel: 0571 8763 2666
Finally it’s golf, and Yellow Dragon Stadium has its own personal driving range. Although not classified by many as a strenuous workout, golf finds itself on this list for many reasons. First off, it gets you outside soaking up some vitamin D while doing a different type of activity that your body is not used to. Moreover, and contrary to popular belief, one hour at the driving range will indeed burn calories, anywhere from 200 to 300 of the blighters.
In terms of prices, two hours of unlimited balls is 120 RMB Monday - Friday before 18:00, and from 18:00-23:00, it costs 150 RMB. On Saturday and Sunday, 150 RMB is the running rate all day. One should note that you can borrow clubs for free and that you can share one tee between your friends.
If you are interested in learning how to play golf, they have an English speaking coach named Alan. However, be prepared to shell out a hefty 500 RMB for a one-hour lesson. It is also worth mentioning that they have a fun virtual golf game running at 200 RMB for the full 18 holes.
Lastly, if you are simply looking to get outside on a nice summer day, going to the driving range can indeed be a social activity. It should not go unmentioned that here you and your friends can purchase two bottles of wine for just 50 RMB, lounge in the outdoor seating, and hit some balls in between conversation. Not a bad deal if you ask me!
Opening hours: 09:00-23:00
Tel: 135 1685 1404
Golf Honorable Mention: The Hangzhou Xihu State GuesthouseView In Map
Though this is not located within Yellow Dragon Stadium, I could not resist including it. Located on the Yanggong Causeway, the Hangzhou Xihu State Guesthouse is your ideal country club. The driving range is of superb quality and the prices are not bad. From Monday to Friday, it is 100 RMB/hour and on Saturday and Sunday, it is 120 RMB.
While you are there, go for a change of scenery and practice what you have been learning at your tennis lessons. From Monday through Friday, the tennis courts run at 100 RMB/hour and on weekends, 120 RMB/hour.
Add: 18 Yanggong Causeway, Hangzhou
Tel: 0571 8797 9889
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Keywords: healthy living Hangzhou sports in Hangzhou how to keep fit in Hangzhou health clubs Hangzhou
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