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nyc edge
Courtesy of Related-Oxford/Edge

Outdoor fitness classes in NYC

Soak up some sun while getting sweaty at the city's best al fresco fitness classes for yoga, CrossFit and more

By Carolyn Stanley, Anny Kim, Shaye Weaver and Collier Sutter
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While gyms have finally begun to reopen, there's still some hesitation among New Yorkers about going in since the pandemic is still a reality. Thankfully, those of us not ready to return to the mat, equipment or punching bags indoors have a lot of options—fitness studios are still offering an outdoor option.  

Even so, with cooler days ahead of us, you may just want to be outside as much as possible. These fitness classes offer a healthy dose of endorphins with a side of vitamin D.

RECOMMENDED: Find the best NYC fitness classes and gyms

Outdoor fitness classes

Edge Yoga
Courtesy of Related-Oxford/Edge

Equinox yoga on top of Edge

News City Life

Yoga is known to be grounding, but how about grounding your chakras from the tippy-top of NYC? Edge, the tallest outdoor observation deck in the Western Hemisphere has teamed up with Equinox gym to bring New Yorkers a fitness class 1,100 feet in the sky.

The morning yoga class series, which costs $50 a session, includes a one-hour yoga class with Equinox on the outdoor sky deck, a yoga mat to use for class, and a 30-minute window after the class to take in the 360-degree view at Edge. (Be sure to stand over the stomach-dropping glass floor.) Classes run Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 9am or Fridays at 7:30am, and you don't need a pricey Equinox membership to get in on these. Yoga mats will be laid out 6 feet apart and face coverings are required at all times throughout the visit (except while on your mat during the class).

BYKlyn Cycle
Photograph: Courtesy BYKlyn Cycle

Byklyn Cycle

Sports and fitness Cycling Park Slope

This fitness studio offers a variety of indoor-cycling classes, including boot-camp hybrids, but since August 12, BYKlyn Cycle has been leading classes at 421 Dean Street. The outdoor space has sun sails to provide shade, recycled astroturf complete with old soccer lines, 18 bikes spread six feet apart as well as a "battery of safety protocols," and a SoundOff music system, much like a silent disco, to provide music.

BKYlyn Yard classes are Real Ride—hills, speed work, intervals and all the things you would do to train outside on a bike—just with a curated playlist and a trainer.

421 Dean Street (byklyn.com). Daily at various times; $30 for one class.

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BK Fit Studios outdoor gym
Photograph: Courtesy BK Fit Studios

BK Fit

Sports and fitness Bedford-Stuyvesant

BK Fit, a cross-training studio that offers more than 100 weekly outdoor classes with four locations in Brooklyn, including curbside workouts at its Bushwick, Clinton Hill, Bed Stuy gyms, and at McCarren Park, as well as an outdoor gym in East Williamsburg, where it can work with its members at a safe distance. 

The workout is efficient and fun, intense, and varied so you'll never be bored while getting fit.

Various locations (bkfitstudios.com). Mon–Fri at 6:30am; $31 for one drop-in class.

Mental NYC
Photograph: Courtesy Mental NYC

Mental NYC at the William Vale

Mental NYC is hosting socially distanced workout and meditation classes at The William Vale throughout the month of September: 
Sunset & Chill: Set your intentions for the week with Mental NYC for sunset movement and meditation sessions in Vale Park every Monday and Tuesday evening at 6:30. Mental Movement is a 45-minute bodyweight high-intensity interval workout that weaves in presence techniques and ends with a centering, guided meditation.
Mental Mornings IRL: Start your mornings with Mental NYC for a Mental Movement sesh in the clouds on the rooftop every Wednesday and Friday morning at 9 with the Mental Movement.
111 North 12th Street (mentalnyc.com); Monday and Tuesdays at 6:30pm and Wednesdays and Fridays at 9am; free.
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305 Fitness
Photograph: Courtesy 305 Fitness

305 Fitness

5 out of 5 stars
Sports and fitness Dance Greenwich Village
305 Fitness, which specializes in a 45-minute dance cardio class, will be at Bryant Park on the following days for socially distanced workouts:
Tuesday/Thursday at 6pm & 7:15pm
Saturday/Sunday at 9am & 10:15am
Bryant Park next to the NYPL (305fitness.com); through October 29; $30 per class.
Yoga Agora
Photograph: Courtesy Yoga Agora

Yoga Agora

Sports and fitness Astoria

Yoga Agora offers affordable drop-in classes with seasoned instructors in a simple and beautiful space, but it has moved outdoors to Astoria Park and the Open Street on 31st Avenue. 

Classes are typically vinyasa for all levels, but the studio does offer specialty classes for those looking for something else. 

Many classes are pay-what-you-wish, while others are capped at about $10. 

33-02 Broadway (yogaagora.com) Daily at various times; donation-based or $10 per class.

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Bodiesynergy
Photograph: Courtesy Bodiesynergy

BodieSynergy

Forget the latest trademarked exercise gimmick: BodieSynergy founder and New Zealand native Joanna Paterson promotes "organic fitness" by leading clients through Prospect Park's geographical features—those grassy hills, stone steps and picnic tables that visitors love to lazily enjoy—to add resistance to simple body-weight movements and make use of fresh oxygen while jogging. No two workouts are ever the same as every session utilizes a new space, and Paterson urges clients to leave the park exactly as they found it. In addition to its signature boot camp, BodieSynergy also offers stroller-friendly workouts for parents plus kettlebell training for extra strength conditioning. Bodiesynergy also offers yoga in the park for $25 per class or $130 for a six-week series.

Meet at Prospect Park West and 15th St (bodiesynergy.com). Various times; single class $20.

The Rise
Photograph: Courtesy The Rise

The Rise

If your morning spirit animal is less early bird and more hibernating bear, free (yes, free) fitness meet-up the Rise is here to give you an A.M. boost. The crack-of-dawn workouts meet every weekday in various locations: Monday HIIT in Washington Square Park; Tuesday "Brooklyn Body Circuit" at Grand Army Plaza; Wednesday core workout in Bryant Park; Thursday "Kings of Queens" boot camp in MacDonald Park in Forest Hills; and Friday hill running on the Williamsburg Bridge. You'll get your heart pumping before most people even hit snooze—and you might just become a morning person in the process.

Various locations (therisenyc.com). Mon–Fri at 6:30am; free.

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Yo Yoga!

Want to perfect your lotus pose without wasting a beautiful day in the city? In temperatures of 68 degrees and up, head to this cozy Midtown East studio where you can keep up your hatha or vinyasa practice in Yo Yoga!'s outdoor sessions on its private roof deck, whose slightly uneven surface creates an extra challenge for your planks and chaturungas. And forget about any flimsy weather excuse; in the event of inclement weather, classes simply move indoors.

344 E 59th St, third floor (646-490-7790, yoyoganyc.com). Various times; single class $25. 

Brooklyn Grange Rooftop Farm
Photograph: © Anastasia Cole Plakias

Yoga at Brooklyn Grange

Attractions Farms Brooklyn Navy Yard

Work on your sun salutations while taking in the actual sunset at the rooftop farm's Monday evening yoga series. Bring your own mat and head up to the open-air patio, where Sarah Schumann, owner of Shambhala Yoga & Dance in Prospect Heights, leads you through a 60-minute all-levels asana practice. Through meditation and movement, you'll work out the day's stress as the sun drops behind the Manhattan skyline.

Brooklyn Grange at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, 63 Flushing Ave, Building 3 (brooklyngrangefarm.com). Mon at 6:30pm; single class $20, six classes $100. Advance registration required. Photo ID required for entry. June 1–Sept 28.

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