The Olympic Games will soon be flooding our screens, with the best of the best competing in more than 40 sports disciplines in Rio next month.
If the impressive physical feats inspire you to get in on the action yourself, here are ways to channel your own inner Olympian in NYC.
Handily the most popular sport of the Summer Olympics, the gymnastics events impress with feats of strength, control and grace. Get a taste of the sport with Body & Pole’s Ring Thing class, which uses a modified version of the gymnastics rings used in men’s competition. Thanks to a pulley and harness system that reduces body weight by half, students can do pullups, dips, inversions and more while seriously working their arm and core strength. $30/class ($25 first visit); 115 W. 27th St., 212-334-6900, bodyandpole.com
Whether you’re looking to perform acrobatic feats, or add some jumping to your workout routine, there are several ways to get on a trampoline. In addition to its flying trapeze, Trapeze School New York, which recently expanded to Williamsburg, offers trampoline classes from beginner to intensive levels that have you doing turntables, back drops and barrel rolls ($40; multiple locations, newyork.trapezeschool.com). For an aerobic workout on a mini-trampoline, check out JumpLife ($28/class; 406 Broadway, 212-966-2604, jump-life.com) and Trampolean ($33/class; Dany Studios, 305 W. 38th St., 212-956-4326, trampolean.nyc).
One of the oldest sports still practiced today, archery takes strength, coordination and focus. At the 2-year-old Gotham Archery, those new to the sport can get an intro lesson that walks them through using the bow and arrows. This summer, the archery range is looking to add another Olympic sport to the mix of classes — javelin throwing. $40/intro class; 480 Baltic St., Gowanus, 718-858-5060, got-archery.com
Boxing is a combat sport, but you can still reap the benefits without getting punched in the face. There are plenty of gyms and studios to pick up boxing in the city, one of the newest being Gotham G-Box, the second studio from Gotham Gym founder Rob Piela. The SoHo spot opened in May with classes held in a boxing ring. Classes typically include a cardio warmup, shadowboxing and partner work where you can throw jabs, hooks and uppercuts. $32/class ($20/first class); 43 Crosby St., 917-472-7384, gothamgymnyc.com
Budding musketeers of all ages and levels can learn the proper technique behind swordplay, which tests you both physically and mentally. Beginners can find group and private lessons, with equipment provided, at Fencers Club ($40 members, $80 nonmembers; 229 W. 28th St., 2nd Fl., 212-807-6947, fencersclub.org) and Manhattan Fencing ($120 for three group adult classes; 225 W. 39th St., 2nd Fl., 212-382-2255, manhattanfencing.com), which also holds free fencing classes in Bryant Park (Fridays from 1:30-2:30 p.m., resumes Sept. 9, through Oct. 14).
Swimming events like the 100M freestyle may get all the attention, but the comparatively new sport of synchronized swimming also has a spotlight in the Olympics. For those who already know how to swim, there are several programs and gyms that teach the water aerobics, including Gotham Synchro (prices vary; multiple locations, 860-546-8426, gothamsynchro.org) Manhattan Plaza Health Club (membership required; 482 W. 43rd St., 212-563-7001, mphc.com) and, in its adult swim classes, the YMCA (membership required; various locations, ymcanyc.org).
Game for competition
Get in the Olympic spirit and go for the gold with these challenges and classes at NYC gyms and studios:
The rowing studio is hosting special Olympic-themed row. Its Row to Rio: Quads class is its signature full-body workout, followed by a relay-style competition where teams of four compete. July 31, 11:30 a.m., $35/class; 555 W. 59th St., 212-757-6035, rowhousenyc.com
During the cycling studio’s Olympic Game challenge, riders can earn points for every class they take, smoothie they order, social media post they make (and tag @swervefitness) and friends they bring in who are new to Swerve. Prizes include free rides, smoothies and, for lucky gold winners, a weekend at Montauk’s Surf Club, homes to Swerve’s newest location. Runs Aug. 5-21, $34/class; multiple locations, swervefitness.com
Select Crunch gyms will host The Games, a workout that combines cardio, core, strength, power, speed and agility training and incorporates battle ropes, cones, roll out ladders and more. At the end of each class, participants compete for prizes (a Crunch swag bag). Open to members and guests with a free 1-day pass. Aug. 3 and 10, 6:30 p.m., Bowery, 2 Cooper Square, 212-614-0120; Aug. 16, 5:45 p.m., E. 59th Street, 1109 Second Ave., 212-758-3434; Aug. 20, 9 a.m., W. 19th Street, 220 W. 19th St., 212-370-0998, crunch.com