The year was 2004, when Facebook launched and Michael Phelps won his first Olympic gold medal, and the City of New York launched Shape Up NYC, a free fitness program that set out to battle childhood obesity and diabetes. The program started at nine locations and has spread across all five boroughs to 250 locations, offering 350 free classes to NYC residents.
Classes span from African dance in the Bronx to yoga in Crown Heights. They’ve got aerobics, Zumba, Latin/Russian dance and belly dancing classes. You can do it in libraries, in parks or at the Coney Island Boardwalk. It’s a welcome Brokester alternative to Classpass, which starts at $75/month and restricts the number of times you can visit a particular studio to three times a month. Shape Up is not only free, but if you fall hard for Caribbean World Dance classes at Fort Greene Park, no one’s going to stop you from showing up to bust a move as often as you want.
I know what you’re thinking: “Where do I sign up?” The answer is, you don’t. That’s right, Brooklynites. Go to any of the 250 locations offering Shape Up NYC classes and you don’t have to sign up or fork over that last bit of cash you were saving for laundry. Just show up in your best Lululemon knock-offs ready for a great workout session.
To find Shape Up NYC classes and locations, search by zip code or address using this map from the NYC Parks Department. You can also search the complete class list on the website, with the option to filter by borough, day of the week and time of day.