The lull between the Fourth of July and Labor Day can drag on at times–they don’t call it the dog days of summer for nothing. There are plenty of recreation programs offering free classes, everything from yoga to canoeing to volleyball, across Brooklyn for all age and experience levels this summer, and even a few that extend on into the fall and beyond. We’ve compiled a guide to outdoor classes and activities, as well as a few indoor options, too, so lace up your sneakers; check out the listings below or the Google Calendar we’ve created for you; and go get your sweat on doing something other than walking to the subway.
The Fulton Area Business Alliance has organized free dance, yoga, meditation and aerobics classes through the end of July. Classes are being conducted by some of the area’s best fitness centers, including The Shala yoga studio, Cumbe, Crunch Gym and the Mark Morris Dance Center. Class times are conveniently scheduled outside of work hours–typically taking place at 7:30am or 6:30pm during the week and 10am or 6pm on weekends, and the Clinton Hill location is close to the C and G trains.
The waterfront park in DUMBO is pretty much mecca for outdoor exercise and activities in the summer. Along with its seasonal music, film and literary programming, BBP also hosts a handful of free public recreation programs, including youth soccer leagues, volleyball, kayaking on Thursdays at 5:30pm or Saturdays at 10am both at Pier 2 dock; chess on Wednesdays at 6:30pm at Pier 1; and fitness classes–early morning yoga at 7:30am on Mondays at Pier 6; sunset pilates every Wednesdays at 7pm at Pier 5; zumba on Sundays at 4pm at Pier 1; and strength training on Mondays at 7pm at Pier 6. Most classes run now through Aug. 19, with some extending into September.
Shape Up NYC
The city’s parks and recreation department oversees dozens of weekly fitness classes across all five boroughs, for all age groups, year round through its Shape Up NYC program, and in the summer months workouts get an added bonus of being outdoors on occasion There are currently 36 classes being offered in Brooklyn every week–most take place indoors; however, there is an outdoor teen boot camp at Fort Greene Park from 10-11am on Tuesdays and a teen body conditioning class at Wingate Park on Saturdays from 9-10am. A full list of classes can be found here or on the calendar above.
School is officially out for summer, and starting today through Aug. 23, the Police Athletic League is blocking off streets, as well as portions of playgrounds and public parks, around Brooklyn and turning them into free outdoor play areas for neighborhood children. Mondays through Fridays from 9am to 5pm, kids have a chance to participate in sports, arts and crafts, games, music and dance, including featured activities like double dutch jump rope, hopscotch, nok hockey and basketball. Playstreets are set up in the following locations: Midwood: Kelly Playground (between Avenue S & 15th Street); Flatlands: Fox Playground (between E. 52nd St. & Avenue H); Coney Island: Our Lady of Solace Church (2866 W. 17th St. at Mermaid Ave.); Kaiser Park (W. 24th-32nd sts. between Neptune & Bay aves.); Bed-Stuy: Reinaldo Salgado Playground (Madison St., behind P.S. 309, between Patchen & Ralph aves.); Sheepshead Bay: Mellet Playground (Avenue V between 13th & 14th sts.); Flatbush: Paerdegat Park (Foster Ave. between Farragut Rd. & E. 40th St.); Fort Greene: Parham Playground (Adelphi St. between Dekalb & Willoughby aves.); Williamsburg: Rodney Park North (S. 5th St. & Marcy Ave.); Sunset Park: 61st Street (between 4th & 5th aves.)
CPF kicked off its summer sports programs for children ages 5-16 on July 1, offering free instruction in tennis, golf and track and field at 60-plus locations across the city. Here in Brooklyn, kids can take classes at Fort Greene Park, McCarren Park, Leif Ericson Park, Lincoln Terrace Park, Jackie Robinson Playground, Prospect Park, Kelly Playground, Kaiser Park, Marine Park, McKinley Park, Lucille Ferrier Playground, Betsy Head Playground, Highland Park and Herbert Von King Park. Golf lessons in Brooklyn for children ages 6-8 are already full for the summer, but there’s still room in the second session for youth ages 9-16 years old, which runs from July 29-Aug. 23 at Herbert Von King Park in Bed-Stuy–register now as space is limited.