The Health Nut's Guide to Keeping Fit at Walt Disney World - Part 1: Activity Options
A Walt Disney World Planning Articleby Amy Wear, PassPorter Guest Contributor
Last modified 09-17-2015
For those of us who are crazy enough to be concerned with keeping fit while on a Disney vacation, a little preparation will go a long ways.
The key is to decide which facilities matter most to you and choose a Disney resort that will meet your activity needs.
Many fitness amenities available at the Grand Floridian resort
Gym rats: If gym equipment is a must, choose Coronado Springs Resort or a Disney deluxe resort with a gym on-site. With few exceptions, it is neither permitted, nor practical, to travel to another resort to work out.
Guests of the Polynesian Resort are permitted to use the gym at the Grand Floridian, but this will only work for those who enjoy incorporating a run between resorts. A list of the Disney resort fitness centers with ratings can be found at TouringPlans.com.
Swimmers: If the pricier resorts aren’t in the budget, lap swimming can be a great option. Most of the Disney resorts have quiet pools, but not all are conducive to swimming laps. Arrive early morning for your best chance of doing laps alone and before the Florida heat sets in. Just keep swimming if the first one you come to is occupied. Serious swimmers may prefer to stay at the non-Disney-owned Swan and Dolphin resorts, which have lap pools.
Runners: Runners will enjoy the scenic jogging paths at Disney’s moderate resorts. In the deluxe category, the Epcot resorts offer the most extensive jogging trail options, with the longest stretch extending from the Epcot resorts to Hollywood Studios. For more of a challenge, a 4-mile loop is available around the Swan and Dolphin Resorts. Again, you’ll want to be prepared for that Florida heat, which may make running in an air-conditioned gym more desirable. For more detailed information on running at the World, check out this AllEars article by Kevin Richardson.
Tennis buffs: Tennis buffs can find courts at Bay Lake Towers, Kidani Village, Boardwalk Inn, Old Key West, Saratoga Springs, and the Yacht and Beach clubs. Unlike the fitness centers, guests of any Disney resort are welcome to use the tennis courts. A fee does apply for equipment rental. Appropriate tennis attire and shoes are required.
Slam dunkers: Slam dunkers will want to take advantage of the basketball courts on site at Fort Wilderness, Kidani Village, Old Key West, and Saratoga Springs.
Cyclists: Bicycles can be rented at several of the Disney resorts. Cyclists looking for long distance rides can search the best routes near Disney World at www.mapmyride.com. The whole family can have fun and an honest work-out with 2, 4, and 6-person Surrey bike rentals at Port Orleans Riverside, Fort Wilderness, or on the Boardwalk.
Jogging paths at POR
Breathtaking views along the jogging paths at Port Orleans Riverside
Golfers: The championship golf courses at Walt Disney World are a big draw for many Disney vacationers. Those more interested in golf than the theme parks will prefer Disney’s Saratoga Springs or Old Key West Resorts in the Disney Springs resort area. The Lake Buena Vista Golf Course is adjacent to Saratoga Springs, but loops around behind Old Key West.
Guests wishing to stay close to the other three golf courses will enjoy staying at the Polynesian, Grand Floridian, or Contemporary Resort. Disney’s Palm, Magnolia, and Oak Trail Golf Courses are located at Shades of Green in the Magic Kingdom Resort Area.
There is complimentary taxi transportation to all the golf courses for guests of any Disney resort and free parking if you prefer to drive yourself. Check out www.golfwdw.com for all your golfing needs.
Walkers: Walkers will be right at home at Walt Disney World. In most cases, you can log your miles without trying by spending your days at the parks. According to the Disney Parks Moms Panel, the average person walks 10 miles per day while visiting a Disney park.
My favourite way to build extra resistance into walking (until they finally got too big) was to push two oversized kids in a double jogger stroller throughout the day. Bring your stroller from home or rent from a company like Orlando Stroller Rentals or Kingdom Strollers. Let the kids conserve their energy when you’re criss-crossing the parks while you burn more calories!
Fun lovers: For a focus on active family fun, rather than getting your heart rate up, Walt Disney World also offers two mini golf courses, boat rentals, 8 beach volleyball courts, and even 45-minute horseback rides over at Fort Wilderness. You can also play at one of the two Disney water parks all day.
Check out all that Walt Disney World has to offer for recreation at https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/recreation/
While you can head off on vacation with the best laid plans, you can expect some roadblocks to your regular routine. The gym may be unexpectedly closed or the quiet pool may be under renovations. Stay tuned for Part 2, where I’ll share tips for actually following through with your exercise goals once you arrive at the World!
Updated 09-17-2015 - Article #1220
by PassPorter Travel Press, an imprint of MediaMarx, Inc.
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