Exercise your right to save: 5 fun ways to work out for free in Berkeley

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It’s easy to get tired of your same old exercise routine quickly. Thankfully, sprinkled throughout Berkeley are tons of opportunities to spice up your workouts! The best part? Lots of them are absolutely free. Here are five ways you can get (and enjoy) your exercise without breaking the bank.

  1. Ride for free at CycleBar

CycleBar Berkeley offers high-energy, high-intensity spin classes — usually for a pretty hefty price, but newcomers can take their first class for free. The cycle studio is new and sleek and offers classes of differing styles, levels and themes (I just attended a Lizzo-themed ride). Choose one that sounds exciting, and take advantage of this killer deal. 

  1. Visit Yoga to the People

Yoga to the People offers eight classes per day on weekdays and five to six on the weekends, so you’ll never have to struggle to find a time that fits into your schedule. Though not technically free, the studio operates on donations to provide the community with affordable and enriching yoga classes. Make it an extra memorable experience by attending either of the candle-lit Sunday evening classes.

  1. Run at the Clark Kerr track

Hike up Dwight Way past the Clark Kerr Campus dorms to find this quiet and secluded haven for runners at the foot of the fire trails. The Clark Kerr track is never crowded, and its soft dirt surface is easy on the joints. Plus, the views from here are beautiful enough to ease anyone’s running pains. Take a stretching or water break and enjoy the spectacular views of the Bay, including the San Francisco and Oakland skylines. The monotony of running in circles is completely offset by this track’s peaceful environs. 

  1. Cash in on a free week CorePower

Another steal! CorePower Yoga has studio locations in Downtown Berkeley and Rockridge, making it a super convenient place to get in a good yoga sweat. Try heated and room-temp classes for an entire week at no cost if you’re a first-timer. Seven days of free classes present tons of opportunities to expand your workout repertoire! 

  1. Take advantage of the RSF classes

RSF group exercise classes are a surefire way to throw some excitement into your workout routine at no cost. Utilize your student membership and try out one of the many classes offered each day. From pilates to Zumba to strength training, the RSF offers classes that will suit every interest and skill level. If you’re already a group exercise lover, try out a new class to change up your routine a bit — my favorites are Cardio Dance with Mitch and Pure Strength with Anne!

  1. Hit the fire trails

It’s easy to forget that just a few blocks east of the hustle and bustle of campus are the serene and lush fire trails. Perfect for hiking or trail running, the fire trails provide a little escape from the stresses of student life. Here, you can enjoy the summer weather and the natural beauty of the Berkeley Hills while you get your workout. Even better, this “gym” is always open, and it’s always free. 

We all know how important for our physical and mental health it is to stay active. With all the opportunities Berkeley has for working out on a budget, getting exercise can improve our financial health, too. Happy sweating!

Contact Margo Salah at [email protected].