For new members of the University and their partners and families
The University has its own sports centre including an Olympic-size swimming pool, and a huge range of sports facilities which staff and partners can access at discounted rates. For information see Oxford University Sport. You can get involved in some of the University Sports which can be a great way of meeting new people.
You can also use the local leisure centres, where you will find gyms, swimming pools and fitness classes at a lower cost than private gyms. To access leisure centre facilities, you can pay per visit, or take out a monthly or annual membership. Pricing will depend on the facilities you wish to use and the days and times of use. Children and seniors qualify for free or discounted activities in many cases. You may need to provide proof of age or of residency within the council area to qualify for membership and discounts. See details of Oxford City Council's leisure centre memberships. Oxford Brookes University's Brookes Sport in Headington is also open for use by the general public.
To find your nearest sports centre, see your council website:
The Go Active website has an excellent search tool for finding local clubs and facilities for any sport which you are interested in.
You can hire bikes and take cycling tours around Oxford. For more information on cycling in Oxford visit the Bikes page, where you will get more information about staff benefits, such as the bike scheme and repair services.
You can join the University Lawn Tennis Club or find one of the lawn tennis clubs across Oxfordshire at the Lawn Tennis Association. Oxford City Council, in partnership with Parks Tennis, run subsidised tennis coaching and cardio tennis sessions as well as matches for all ages across all of Oxford’s public parks. The Parks Tennis Association offers memberships during the summer season to play on the grass courts in the University Parks.
You can search for local running or jogging groups on the Run Together website.
Oxford is known for many charity running events, including:
Other races in Oxfordshire for club runners include the Race to the Stones, a 100 km trail run along an ancient Viking and Roman path through the North Wessex Downs, Vale of the White Horse and the Chiltern hills.
Ramblers is a well-established walking club with groups for different age groups and locations around Oxfordshire, or see information on local walks and rides. If you are looking for opportunities to walk in Oxford, visit the Walking page.
The ancient game of 'Real Tennis', a type of court tennis favoured by Henry VIII and popularised by Shakespeare, is still played in Oxford on a sixteenth-century court at Merton College.