The operating cost of City life has always been as soaring as our skyline. But with all of us taking a more discriminating look at our spending habits the luxuries that once seemed par for the course in New York, like five-dollar lattes or taxi rides, appear now to be quite superfluous. Exorbitant gym membership fees and yoga classes at $15 or $20 a pop can add up. Here are a few frugal fitness tips that will have you tightening the belt—literally and figuratively.
Try an online workout class.
Plenty of the hot new fitness gurus and current techniques are available on YouTube! Tara Stiles of the hot new Strala Yoga has a channel with an assortment of videos. If you prefer a more traditional yoga method, try Yogayak.com for full beginner/intermediate level flow classes. Tracy Anderson has a channel for her method, the famed Tracy Anderson Method, which Gwyneth Paltrow swears by! (It got her in top shape for Iron Man 2.) A few tips for online workouts: Don’t push yourself too hard–expecially for the yoga videos. There aren’t instructors to guide your alignment in yoga or correct your techniques. If you’re overextending or modifying a position yourself, you could and up with an injury. Make sure you watch the video’s first and start with the beginner series–especially for the yoga videos, some knowledge of yoga is required so I would recommend taking a few beginner classes before diving into an online practice.
Free, Donation-based or Cheap yoga.
Yoga to The People is a donation-based organization with locations in New York, Berkeley, San Francisco and soon Seattle. They offer a full schedule of Vinyasa classes at multiple locations throughout NYC.
If you’re interested in a more non-traditional fitness-focused yoga, Strala Yoga in SoHo offers informal styles of classes like Strong, Relax or Recover for a mere $10 per class.
Everyone’s favorite fitness-gear designer, lululemon Athletica, offers free weekly yoga classes at every store location. They even provide mats! Check out the community calendar for each location to find out more information about events.
Join your local Recreation Center.
If you can’t seem to motivate in your own home, the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation has affordable memberships and locations throughout the five boroughs. They offer weight rooms, basketball courts, dance studios, fitness classes and indoor pools. The premium membership, which includes access to all facilities and pools, is $75 per year!
FREE passes. The American Health and Fitness Alliance offers FREE passes good for admission to many health clubs and yoga or pilates studios. These passbooks can be purchased for $75 and are filled with a year’s worth of coupons for free classes or weeklong memberships to local gyms and studios in New York, Chicago, Houston and Los Angeles.