Running
Photo: Greg Rosenke/Unsplash

Outdoor fitness classes in Tokyo

Want to get fit without the gym? Join one of the city’s al fresco fitness clubs to try running, dodgeball, acroyoga and more

By Youka Nagase
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While gyms in Tokyo have reopened, most people are still hesitant about spending hours in an enclosed space, doing dumb-bell sets or running on treadmills with the face mask on. Home exercise is a solution, but some of us just need a little social motivation to push ourselves to get results – or out of bed. Here are some foreigner-friendly outdoor fitness groups that will help keep you accountable, so you can stay on track with your fitness goals without having to sign up for a gym membership.

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Get out and get fit

SOGO Fitness
SOGO Fitness
Photo: fb.com/sogo.fitness

Sogo Fitness

One of Tokyo’s biggest international fitness communities, Sogo Fitness offers a diverse range of classes for all levels. Most are conducted outdoors for free, and led by motivated athletes who will push you to your limits.

The regular programme includes bootcamps at Yoyogi Park on Sunday morning, intense stair workouts on Monday evening, 5K social running sessions on Tuesday evening, Spartan race training at Shiba Park on Wednesday morning, and a high intensity body weight training session on Thursday evening.

No prior sign up is required. Just check the official Facebook group for the weekly schedule and show up at your preferred session.

Tokyo Trail Running
Tokyo Trail Running
Photo: fb.com/tokyotrailrunning

Tokyo Trail Running

Tokyo Trail Running is for those who enjoy getting closer to nature. Locations vary from week to week, but based on previous sessions, expect venues like Mt Takao, the Minato Alps, Mt Tsukuba and Okutama.

Many trail running events involve a trip to a waterfall or a dip in the river, so expect to get your clothes wet. It’s not required, but it’s a good idea to bring trail running shoes to avoid tripping, and a water pack to keep you hydrated throughout the day. Events are open to all, but we’d recommend having some experience with trail running before you join.

To sign up, head to the Facebook page, click ‘going’ on your preferred event and wait for a confirmation from the organiser.

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Mikkeller Run Club
Mikkeller Run Club
Photo: fb.com/mikkellerrunningclubtokyo

Mikkeller Run Club

Copenhagen-based craft beer brand Mikkeller hosts a run club on the first Saturday of every month at both its Shibuya and Kanda venues. Runners are split into three groups based on speed and experience, so all levels are welcome to join.

The event is free. However, there’s currently a limit of around 30 people per session to maintain social distancing. Like the official Facebook page to be the first to know about upcoming schedules. Spots get booked up quickly, so sign up as soon as you see the event announcement.

Tokyo Dodgeball
Tokyo Dodgeball
Photo: fb.com/tokyododgeball/photos

Tokyo Dodgeball Friendship Club

If you hate working out but want to stay fit, why not play a casual game of dodgeball with this English-friendly dodgeball community? No workout experience needed: just come in comfortable clothes and be prepared to dodge some balls.

Rooftop sessions are held in Yokohama every Sunday evening. You can sign up through the group’s Meetup page, and a ¥500 fee is collected at the venue. The game itself is good fun, and there’s a trip to a bar afterwards, where you can get to know your fellow players.

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Acroyogis
Acroyogis
Photo: fb.com/acroyoyogis

Acroyogis

Start your Sundays with some calming acroyoga, an exercise that combines both yoga and acrobatics, held on the spacious lawn of Yoyogi Park. Acroyogis is more of a casual meetup rather than a lesson, but beginners are more than welcome to join. It’s a good opportunity to learn the basics from experienced members before committing to a studio. Most people practice on the grass, but feel free to bring a yoga mat. The meetups are free, but donations to the organisers are always appreciated.

More outdoor activities

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