13 Ways To Keep Fit In San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua
by Jenna Reid
San Juan del Sur is booming as more foreigners heed the tales of the kick-back beach lifestyle-on-a-budget that’s available in Nicaragua.
One sign of this surge is the array of fitness options popping up all over town. Nicaragua isn’t only for yoga retreats anymore. There are now many more options to help you stay fit in San Juan del Sur.
Surfing is what put Nicaragua on the map for a lot of foreigners. It still draws thousands each year to its fantastic waves, offshore winds, and pristine beaches. San Juan del Sur is home to many well-known breaks, offering waves for everyone, from beginner to pro. As any surfer will tell you, surfing is not only fun but also a fantastic workout.
There are two gyms open to the public in SJDS. The Fight Club Gym is the larger of the two. It offers a variety of classes as well as free weights, cable machines, championship boxing ring, exercise & medicine balls, balance boards, TRX straps, padded area for floor work, and more. There is also a small gym with the appropriate name of Gymsito (“Little Gym”). This gym has more machines than the other and also has free weights.
The Fight Club Gym offers several CrossFit classes. These come in the cost of your membership if you are a resident of Nicaragua, or you can pay separately. The Fight Club Gym has hired an ex-CrossFit gym owner from the US to teach four classes a week. Wes Staton’s classes will get you into shape fast and have you feeling your workout for several days after. Wes also organizes CrossFit retreats here in San Juan del Sur. Check out his website for more info.
4. Boxing & MMA
The Fight Club Gym has a boxing class once a week as well as private lessons. There is also a retired Nicaraguan boxer and professional trainer who offers private classes behind the Centro Civico Cultural and Deportivo. Martin “Chicharron” Ruiz is an excellent trainer for both the experienced and novice. Operating out of The Fight Club Gym is also MMA Master’s Nicaragua which trains no-gi Jiu-Jitsu, submission grappling, MMA, and wrestling every night Monday thru Friday.
Juan Pablo of TKD San Juan del Sur has been holding taekwondo and self-defense classes for both adults and kids in San Juan del Sur. Many of the children are thriving under his guidance and making a name for the taekwondo team all over Nicaragua. They perform in tournaments pretty much every weekend.
San Juan del Sur has a bunch of bars and nightclubs to dance in every night but that’s not what we’re talking about here. With the addition of MÚÚV Dance & Yoga, you can learn from a professional dancer. MÚÚV offers Zumba, youth dance/ballet, salsa, meditation workshops, adult contemporary dance, and yoga classes.
SUP Del Sur recently opened and has fast made a name for themselves with guided sunset SUP tours around the bay and SUP Yoga anchored in the ocean, and in some of the hotel pools. They also offer private classes for group vacationers and retreats.
9. Circus Performance Training
You always know when the Momentom Collective is in San Juan del Sur. Their free performances pop up all over town wowing kids and adults alike. Don’t let the act fool you, though. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to do what these artists do. If you think you’ve got that kind of dedication, or if you’re just curious, they offer daily classes in the different arts of aerials, hula hooping, fire dancing, acro-yoga, yoga, and meditation.
10. Cycling & Mountain Biking
The Eskimo ice cream shop down by the beach in town as well as El Gringo’s Rentals both rent bikes equipped with a cute little basket for carrying your personal items. Moke Huhu Nicaragua Surf School & Adventures also has bikes available for rent. These are more of a mountain bike style and come with a lock. There are a plethora of bike trails through the hills of San Juan del Sur. The most popular trails are off the road to the north beaches called Chocolata.
San Juan del Sur has many options for hikers, some with stunning views at the top. The hike to the Jesus statue and to the lighthouse are the two most common hikes. They are visible on either side of the bay. You can catch the road to the Jesus statue by walking to the north end of the bay and cutting into the neighborhood below the statue. The lighthouse is a bit more difficult to navigate. On the south end, next to the port, is the Acopio fish market, there is a small trail leading up to the left. For more information about hiking in San Juan del Sur, click here.
San Juan del Sur consists of a lot of dirt roads, which are perfect for runners. Put on your running shoes, pick a road, and go. When adventuring out to less populated areas, make sure you go during daylight, and leave your valuables at home. It’s best to run in groups. Running on the beach, around the crescent from end to end and back again is also a great option.
There are two designated spots for skateboarding in San Juan del Sur. The most popular and largest is at the Surf Ranch Resort. They hold skate competitions a few times a year. Finca las Nubes also has a small bowl and a few rails at the base of their property.
If you’re the active type and you’re looking for something to do in Nicaragua, as you can see, there are plenty of options. This growing list will no doubt keep you fit in San Juan del Sur.
Jenna Reid moved to San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua with her husband and two kids in March 2015. She helps her husband operate a website development company, Señor Coders, and enjoys freelance writing. Jenna and her husband also created the only online directory in San Juan del Sur, the SJDS Directory. Her personal blog is The 1 Less Traveled By.