The Best Fitness Festivals Of 2019


Hopefully by now we’re past the point where exercise and activity is seen as some kind of punishment to be endured, so if it’s enjoyable why not enjoy it all day, or even all weekend? Now you can, because fitness festivals have become a thing. Whether you’re into fitness classes, running, yoga or even dodgeball, there’s an event for you. Here are some of the UK’s best.

Balance Festival (10th-12th May)

Wisely for a festival in early May, this London weekender is held indoors. You’ll find everything from HIIT workouts to ancient yoga and breathing techniques under one roof, with workouts (from £5), free yoga sessions and talks from the best instructors and boutique fitness studios London has to offer. There’s also a great chance to see the latest trends in fitness clothing, beauty and wearable tech, as well as enjoying samples of healthy food and drink.

Buy tickets | From £24.50

Hackney Festival Of Fitness (17th-19th May)

There is a lot going on at what organiser Virgin Active calls the UK’s largest fitness festival, so there should be something for everyone. Saturday sees fitness classes and experiences aplenty, including a spin session in a pop-up studio by Virgin and The Evolution Of Music HIIT workout from superclub spin-off Ministry of Sound Fitness. There are also sessions set to ’70s funk and live orchestral accompaniment to a yoga and meditation class. On Sunday the festival culminates in the Hackney Half Marathon.

Buy tickets | Saturday £35, half marathon £54

Bournemouth 7s (24th-26th May)

If you’re into team sports, consider your May bank holiday sorted – get yourself down to Bournemouth for the sporting equivalent of Glastonbury and join over 30,000 like-minded athletes and sports fans. The Bournemouth 7s offers the chance to enter a team or spectate in rugby, netball, hockey, dodgeball and volleyball. The activity doesn’t stop when the sun goes down, though, because that’s when 15 festival arenas come to life with both live bands and DJs.

Buy tickets | Camping ticket from £170, single day from £50

RunFestRun (31st May-2nd June)

Running festivals for all the family are rare birds indeed, so RunFestRun in Wiltshire is a welcome addition to the calendar. The festival starts with an easy welcome run on Friday called the Sunset Shuffle, before offering timed distances from 2.5km to a half marathon on “Serious Saturday”. Sunday takes itself far less seriously with a fancy dress (provided by the festival) fun run to a Big Bug Hoe Down in the woods. Not only all that, there’s music in the evenings, with headliner Olly Murs, Razorlight and a DJ set from Faithless.

Buy tickets (available from 21st March) | £140

Love Trails (4th-7th July)

If you want your festival getaway to be in the really great outdoors, make for this celebration of running on the Gower Peninsula. One guided trail run is included in your ticket price (you can sign up for more if you’re keen) and there are plenty of just-turn-up-and-run runs, including a beer mile relay. In case you need some variety, there are numerous non-running activities, such as coasteering, rock climbing, yoga and guided meditation, plus – and this is the best bit – wood-fired hot tubs.

Buy tickets | From £139

Soul Circus (16th-19th August)

“Put yourself back together and recalibrate” is probably the advice most follow after a festival, but that’s what you’ll be focusing on at this celebration of movement, music and food in the Cotswolds. The festival hosts over 250 daytime classes taught by 100 teachers and spiritual guides, with sessions in yoga, mindfulness, tai chi and more. Soul Circus is also family-friendly with kids’ yoga, giant games, crafts and a glitter den, plus children under 15 years old get in free. At night the event opens up to numerous live acts, experiences and music, with a variety of genres and all kinds of intensity featured so you can find the vibe you’re looking for.

Buy tickets | Day tickets from £79, weekend tickets from £175

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