It’s cold outside, there’s no denying it. The onset of the Shanghai winter means that you’ve locked your bike away, and there’s not much chance you’ll be walking any further than the Lawson’s at the end of your block. Let’s admit it – you’ll only go there to stock up on chocolate before you settle onto the sofa with the latest series on DVD. This sudden lack of exercise can (and will) result in some accidental weight gain. So what can you do and where can you go to keep fit and stay warm at the same time?
Here are four sporting and fitness suggestions that are more satisfying than chocolate and TV, and a lot healthier.
1) The Gym
Gyms are the most obvious places to go for exercise in Shanghai. They cater to all levels of fitness and energy, depending whether you want to get fit, maintain your level, or just to socialise.
California Fitness is one of the top gyms in Shanghai. A Hong Kong based company, it has many celebrity endorsers including Jackie Chan. The Shanghai branches are well equipped with the best and latest in cardio and weight machines. They run Les Mills classes, spin groups and yoga workshops.
Membership doesn’t come cheap. Prices and package offers seem to change daily, so it’s best to go and speak to a consultant directly. They can be pushy, but use your best negotiating skills to get a good package.
California Fitness 加州健身View In Map
Add: 5-6F, Infiniti Shopping Mall, 138 Huaihai Zhonglu, near Pu'an Lu, Luwan District, Shanghai
Tel: 4008 100 988
Open: Monday to Friday 06:00–24:00; Saturday and Sunday 08:00–22:00
Getting there: Metro Line 1, Huangpi Nan Lu Station
Find more gyms in Shanghai
2) SquashView In Map
Squash is the perfect winter activity. It’s a faced paced racquet and ball game, played in a four-walled indoor court. A two player game, running, jumping and squealing is unavoidable and thoroughly enjoyable. Plus, the little squash ball is very forgiving as you hit out all your frustrations.
Squash is a popular game in China and there are many courts located around the city. You may even have one in your apartment complex. For those who aren’t so lucky, The Shanghai East Asia Squash Court at the Shanghai Grand Stage has some great rental rates on courts and equipment. For an hour on a weekday evening, it costs 45 RMB, and it’s 55 RMB at weekends.
Add: Shanghai East Asia Squash Court, Shanghai Grand Stage, 1111 Caoxi Bei Lu, near Tianyaoqiao Lu, Shanghai
Tel: 021 64384952
Open: Daily, 09:00-22:00
Getting there: Metro Line 1, Shanghai Indoor Stadium
3) Ten-Pin Bowling
Feel free to laugh at this suggestion, but whatever gets you up and moving is better than nothing. Bowling is a lot of fun, and can even be played with beer in hand.
The Orden Bowling Centre is open 24 hours a day for ten-pin bowling, pool, snooker and arcade games. Bring your friends and make an afternoon of it; it’s always a laugh.
Orden Bowling Centre 欧登保龄球馆View In Map
Add: 10 Hengshan Lu, near Gao’an Lu, Shanghai
Tel: 021 6474 6666
Open: Daily, 24 hours
Getting there: Metro Line 1, Hengshan Lu Station
Stretch and tone in the tranquil warmth of a yoga studio. Y+ has two well-located studios in Shanghai. Their flagship branch is in Xintiandi and they have a second studio on Fuxing Xi Lu. They practice a range of adapted yoga styles including “hot” Bikram yoga for which the room is heated to 40 degrees.
Y+ caters to all levels and offers pre- and post-natal groups. Classes start at 10:00 and go on throughout the day with the last one beginning at 20:45. Instructors speak in English, Mandarin, or both – check the schedule for details.
Xintiandi Branch View In Map
Add: Room 17-20, 2F, 202 Hubin Lu, Luwan District, Shanghai
Tel: 021 6340 6909
Fuxing Branch View In Map
Add: 299-2 Fuxing Xilu, near Huashan Lu, Xuhui District, Shanghai
Tel: 136 8194 1936
Open: Daily 10:00–22:00
Getting there: Metro Line 1, Huangpi Nan Lu (Xintiandi); Metro Line 1, Changshu Lu (French Concession)
With these tips under your belt, you should be able to weather the winter without putting on too much weight. In theory, at least!
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