Summer Sports to Get You Outside

The sun’s out. Time to leave the house. Here’s how.

Tired of spending every sunny afternoon at the pub? Us too.

To help you soak up that vitamin D while actually breaking a sweat, we put together this guide to some awesome fun-in-the-sun activities that anyone can try today. Just don’t forget the factor 30.

Best for solo adventures

Can’t drag your mates out? Or just fancy going it alone? We got you.


Climbers like Alex Honnold have sparked a massive boom in indoor bouldering in recent years. But, spoiler alert, you can also try bouldering outside! On actual rocks! Naturally, you’ll need a crash mat for those inevitable falls, and may we suggest a helmet and some chalk, too? A great group activity, bouldering is also huge fun on your own – just make sure you tell someone where you’re going and always climb within sight of others. Either way, it’s a great full body workout which puts a particular emphasis on back and finger strength as well as building spacial awareness.

Get involved: Google your best local spots then either draft some friends or head out on your own. If you want a buddy but your own won’t come with you, join a group like London Ladies Climb to get started.


Paddleboarding is a great workout, promoting balance, core strength and self determination. Best of all, because it’s just you in nature, it’s great for capturing a zen half hour or so, too. To get involved you can either rent or buy a board. Depending on where you live (hello to our Santa Cruz and Sydney-based Hueligans) you might well appreciate a wetsuit to keep you warm when you fall in.

Get involved: Most beach-side towns and cities will have a local SUP (standup paddleboard) group, so search online. If you’re unable to try SUP, British Canoeing’s Paddle Ability Initiative helps you find canoeing clubs catering to those with disabilities.


If cycling isn’t your thing and skateboarding is a bit too Tony Hawk for your liking, but you still want to get around quickly and put yourself through your paces in the process, longboarding might be the answer. As the name suggests, the boards are longer than skateboards, more closely mimicking the shape of surfboards, allowing you to easily carve along the local promenade. According to studies, not only does it burn about eight calories a minute, it also promotes flexibility.

Get involved: All you really need is a longboard and space to get started. A helmet is smart, too. Want a bit of extra encouragement? Girl Dreamer is a Birmingham-based group aiming to get more women of colour into the sport.

Best for team fun

Whether you’ve motivated the squad or are hooking up with strangers, these group activities will get the blood flowing, and the social muscles working.


Whether you fancy your chances as an Olympian, want to recreate that Top Gun ‘training’ scene, or just like finding sand in unusual places, volleyball is the one for you. What’s more, according to the Centre for Professional Recovery, volleyball can “help circulate more blood, oxygen, and nutrients into the body as well as enhance your energy levels to improve your overall well-being” as well as developing improved hand-eye coordination and reflexes.

Get involved: All you need for a very unofficial game is friends and a ball, but Google will help you find local courts – a net does make things more fun. Brighton Volleyball Club offers a great way into the sport on England’s sunny south coast.


From scrambling about on rocks to scaling full cliff faces and jumping into the ocean, coasteering is possibly the ultimate in adventure sports. It isn’t quite a team sport, but you’d be mad to risk it alone due to the massive risk of death or injury if done without an experienced guide watching out for you. Unless you’re land-locked or live in a desert, this is pretty much a sport that anyone can do, anywhere, too (if you’re nowhere near the sea, then canyoning is its river-based equivalent). For an entire body workout with an added mental boost of being in nature, look no further.

Get involved: This isn’t one to freestyle – you’ll need a guide to point out which jumps are safe, and which are actually into water that’s only a few inches deep. Rock Solid Coasteering offers guided classes in Devon, UK. For international exploration, search #coasteering online.


This ancient Gaelic sport is a great summer alternative to rugby, field hockey and lacrosse. Yes, it’s brutal. But yes, it’s fun. Naturally, you’ll need to get kitted up. Less of a turn-up-and-play-in-the park, more of a join-a-local-team one, this. Info on exactly how hurling benefits the body are scarce, but it doesn’t take Einstein to figure out speed, stamina and co-ordination will likely receive a boost. Plus, according to the Irish Times, an average hurling midfielder burns more than 2,000 calories per game.

Get involved: The Gaelic Athletic Association works to promote Gaelic sports such as hurling worldwide. Check out its website for your nearest amateur team.

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