There’s no better time of year to spring into shape than in spring: beautiful blue skies, a light, balmy breeze and the sweet smell of jasmine.

Tess Gibney

Although the gym is undoubtedly an excellent, organised way to stay fit all year round, who wouldn’t want to be outside when the weather’s so nice? We’ve found some local incentives to encourage you to get out and about this October.

Active in Ku-ring-gai

Ku-ring-gai Council’s latest ‘Active in Ku-ring-gai’ classes are set to start just as the weather begins to really heat up. Running from Tuesday October 7 to Friday December 12 in locations across Ku-ring-gai, this locally-based recreation program is designed to promote physical activity in residents of all ages. Though some classes are held indoors, majority are based in the area’s lovely public parks.

Hosting a range of classes such as pilates, yoga, Tai Chi and the combinatory ‘gym without walls’ program, ‘Active in Ku-ring-gai’ ensures there’s an activity to suit everyone. For older citizens looking to try something new, be sure not to miss Tai Chi. This free-flowing form of ancient Chinese martial art has a range of wonderful health benefits; including alleviation of arthritis pain, promotion of fast recovery from stroke and heart attack, relief from physical affects of stress and improvement of balance and stability. It is an easy, peaceful activity that melds the physical with the spiritual to deliver a dynamic, meditative form of exercise.

For more information on the program, visit Most classes are $10, though the walking groups are free of charge. Tai Chi is held weekly at St Ives Hall (11:30am – 12:30 pm) on Wednesdays and at Echo Point Park (11:00 am – 12:00 pm) on Thursdays.

Harbour walk

Sydney is arguably most beautiful in spring and summer, and our close proximity to the water makes for numerous gorgeous walking options across the city. In lieu of this, there’s no excuse not to get outdoors and engage in some gentle exercise in the warmer months.

A collaboration between The Walking Volunteers, State, local and Federal governments and other authorities titled ‘Walking Sydney Harbour’ has been devised as a way to “share the vision to improve public access to, and enhance the recreational enjoyment of Sydney Harbour and its tributaries, as well as Sydney’s coastline, for the people of Sydney and visitors to the city”. Including a ‘Sydney Walker Map’ phone application, the project makes it easy for both residents and tourists alike to discover Sydney’s many beautiful coastal walks. Additionally, the recent $8.6 million dollar restoration to the iconic Farm Cove sea wall will ensure the preservation of the iconic walking path connecting the Royal Botanic Gardens to the harbour shore. Other fantastic walks to try include the Taronga Zoo to Manly bushwalking track and the Fairfax scenic walk in Manly.

Visit the ‘Walking Sydney Harbour’ section on the NSW Government Planning and Environment website for a detailed compilation of various harbour and coastal walks. Brochures can be collected from Sydney Visitor Centres and the National Parks and Wildlife Service.