Being by The Thames makes everything more exciting! London’s river inspires some truly creative activities, and this is not limited to arts and culture - what about exercise? We have come up with a list of fun ways you can keep fit in the lead up to Summer – and to top all that off they are all on or by the beautiful Thames
1. Go Moo Canoeing
With multiple different routes suiting different preferences, levels and age groups, a day on a Moo Canoe is a fab-moo-lous and active way to see London from the river. Explore its water ways in these fetching canoes and you’ll wonder why you ever considered a day in on the sofa. All trips head out from Limehouse Basin, with the eastbound trips going to Greenwich, taking in Canary Wharf along the way; and westbound trips heading under Tower Bridge, and past HMS Belfast. You’ll also burn a few calories while you’re at it so what are you waiting for?
1. Equinox Summer Series followed by brunch, Rumpus Room, Mondrian Hotel
Returning in June following last year’s successful programme, The Mondrian Hotel’s newly designed Rumpus Rooms will host a series of exercise classes in this exclusive location. The stunning rooftop venue offers panoramic views across London and of our river, giving you an extra boost of motivation. If that wasn’t enough, brunch is provided on the roof after all your hard work – just think, the tougher the workout, the more you can indulge afterwards! The programme of exercise includes boxing, hip hop yoga and barre classes, meaning you’ll never get bored.
3. Go Rock Climbing by The Thames followed by a stroll along Riverside Walk
Rock climbing’s popularity has rock-eted in recent years, due to its reputation for being a sociable and fun activity to be enjoyed with friends rather than strenuous exercise. Despite this, it is an excellent way to build strength and if you’re not scared of heights is the perfect activity for cardio-phobes! Vauxwall Climbing Centre is in an ideal location by the river, meaning you can stretch your muscles after your session with a stroll down Riverside Walk, leading you to many perfect post-workout brunch locations such as the delicious, Jay Rayner approved Brunswick House.
4. Join a Riverside Bike Tour
Fat Tire Tours are one of many organisations which operate Thames riverside tours on the back of a bike. This is a great way to enjoy what the Thames has to offer, staying active and absorbing London’s rich riverside history while you’re at it. Highlights include Tower Bridge, Shakespeare’s Globe and The London Eye. If you get peckish after all the exercise, there is even a stop in Borough Market for you to re-fuel!
5. Enjoy a Spot of Saturday Sailing with Southbank Sailing Club in Putney
It’s been said that if you can sail on the Thames with its unpredictable tides and winds, you can sail anywhere! The Southbank Sailing Club hosts Saturday sessions which are open to people of all abilities. You can join races or simply do your own thing, and with dinghies available to rent there is no excuse not to. This an ideal way to absorb fresh air, learn new skills and get on the river.
Photo by John Clare
6. Take part in some Stand Up Paddle Boarding
Stand Up Paddle Boarding is the world’s fastest growing water sport, and is definitely the perfect way to stay fit in a fun and unique way. Active 360 is championing the rise of this sport, with locations in Putney, Kew, Paddington Basin and Brentford Lock. Beginners are welcome, and you could even take part in one of their more kooky variations such as SUP Yoga or their litter pick ‘Paddle & Picks’. They are also working with the Plastic Oceans Festival, and your first experience could be through one of these events.
7. Bootcamp in Battersea Park
This may be for our more seasoned exercisers, but the riverside location of this Bootcamp class in Battersea Park will surely distract you from the physical pain you will be putting yourself through if you choose to go along. Everyone is welcome and the sessions are all carefully planned to be adapted to any ability or fitness level.
8. Kayak through London's most iconic stretches of water!
Big Ben, Tower Bridge - most people's minds will jump to these iconic structures when they think of London. Why not avoid the crowds and discover these spectacular icons in a whole new way, from the back of a kayak! Kayak London has classes for all abilities, this is suitable if you want a new way to get fit or if you want a new fun way to see London. There are also options for less trodden - or kayaked - areas such as Little Venice in West London.
9. Al Fresco Pilates and Outdoor Yoga at St. Katharine Docks
Taking place on a floating pontoon in the middle of St. Katharine Docks’ centre basin, these summer pilates and yoga sessions are the perfect chance to soak up some rays while you exercise. Whether you are trying to heal an injury or get more toned, pilates is suitable for everyone. So why not float your way to fitness this summer and sign up to these classes?
St. Katharine Docks
10. Thames side running club
Runners often claim that it is a meditative activity which helps them switch off, de-stress and unwind. Location matters, and can be the sole motivation that keeps runners going! If like us you think the picturesque Thames and all that it offers is the perfect companion as you are running, why not join like-minded folk in the London City Runners Club, which offers a range of runs weekly that go along the Thames.