If you are thinking about fun outdoor activities, here’s what spring in Novi Sad has to offer.
Even the most cynical people around us can hardly stay indifferent during warm weather, longer days and people smiling in the streets. It’s no surprise that we feel the urge to be more active as soon as the sun is out, especially after sitting at home for months. We’ve always associated spring with new beginnings, so why not use it as an opportunity to start practising new healthy habits? Luckily, there are many locations in Novi Sad that could help you with that.
If you didn’t spend all your time in the house in the last couple of years, then you must have noticed the number of outdoor gyms. Novi Sad is trying to provide as many outdoor gyms to its citizens as possible. These are convenient for both professional and recreational athletes, and they might as well be an entrance ticket to the world of weight trainings, but cardio trainings as well, which your lungs and heart will be thankful for. There are already more than twenty outdoor gyms in the city, which is quite impressive. Next time you feel like working out, hit the closest gym in the open. Unlike breathing stale air in the gyms, outdoor workouts are free, while spending time outside in the fresh air and getting natural vitamin D through sun exposure can be a bonus.
Locations where you can find outdoor gyms are the Quay, Detelinara (10 Gagarinova Street), Jaše Tomića, Jovana Dučića and Patrijarha Pavla boulevards, Đačko igralište, Liman Park, 1300 Kaplara Street, Ticanova, Blagoja Parovića, Milice Stojadinović Srpkinje streets, as well as the Sajlovo, Veternik and Petrovaradin neighbourhoods…
They say you don’t need a lot to run – a pair of running shoes and willpower. Still, surfaces such as concrete and asphalt aren’t that friendly towards your knees and joints. If you want to start running this spring, you might want to do it on a surface suitable for such an activity. That’s right, we’re talking about running tracks. They are made of different materials, but all tracks have one thing in common: they’re rubbery and elastic, therefore, adapted for running. In Novi Sad, you can run on the running track along the entire Belgrade Quay, or in ‘Limanski park’ that has a running track called the ‘Health Track.’ We urge the pedestrians not to walk on the tracks (yes, we know how squishy those are) so that the runners can exercise without any obstacles. Maybe you can even try running with them!
If you’re a recreational athlete who likes to run from time to time, not too often, you don’t have to worry about your joints. If you don’t have any nearby running tracks, it’s absolutely okay to run on an ordinary surface as well. Futoški Park is a quiet place that has a lot of greenery, more than other parks in the city, and thanks to that it offers cleaner air and beautiful views. The Boulevard of Europe and the park next to the Railway Station are also great options, as well as Sajmište and a levee next to the DTD (Danube-Tisa-Danube) canal. However, if you want to run in a more natural environment and you’re not too lazy to leave the city, check out Kamenički Park. It might not be suitable for beginners, since it doesn’t have organized tracks, it’s more about your skills. The uneven surface will also add up to the intensity of your workout. Finally, you can even run at the Fortress, while HIIT (high-intensity interval training) lovers might find the stairs interesting!
Football Fields and Basketball Courts
If you’re not a solo player and you enjoy group activities and chitchats, we don’t even have to tell you where the best basketball courts and football fields are. Naturally, the best one is the closest one! We are sure you’ve already found your favourite field/court, if not, check out the nearby school backyards and green spaces within residential buildings. Given that there are more than 100 football fields and basketball courts, there’s no doubt you’ll find something for yourself in less than half an hour!
It’s not warm enough for water sports yet, but it’ll be in a month or two. And when the nice weather arrives, you can go to the Štrand beach. There, in addition to chilling and relaxing, splashing about or tanning, you can swim as well. However, if you’re not a professional swimmer, make sure to go with someone how is, since the Danube is a risky river. In the meantime, on Štrand (which celebrates its 110th birthday this year), you can enjoy plenty of other activities – walking, beach volleyball, basketball…
Skates, bicycles, walks…
Every flat surface we’ve listed above can be suitable for walking as well – provided you don’t disturb the runners, as we already mentioned. If you choose biking, you can enjoy numerous cycling tracks, but be careful and look after both yourself and other people. The same goes for the fans of skates and roller skates (which are becoming more and more popular).
Before you dive into any physical activity – whether it’s doing something in the open or indoors – make sure you warm up. How needs injuries anyway? Get some comfortable clothes (intended for exercising) on. But be careful! Before you end up spending a lot of money on different brands, check out some less expensive ‘no name’ brands. In reality, an ordinary cotton shirt will do just fine. Make sure you have appropriate shoes – there’s a difference between running shoes and gym shoes intended for isometric exercises. Don’t forget to bring your water bottle since you’ll sweat a lot and, therefore, be thirsty. In order to make sure you’re safe enough (if an injury is to happen), you can bring along someone willing to exercise with you. It’s always more fun working out with someone, no matter how big of a solo player you are.
Photo: Jelena Ivanović