We’re stoked it’s winter – there are a bunch of activities you can only do when it’s this nippy. These are the coolest sports to get involved with this season, guaranteed to get you buff even while wearing mittens.
What: Pockets of the city turn into beautiful outdoor ice rinks that look straight out of the movies. One of our favourites is between the Canary Wharf skyscrapers. You’ve never seen ‘suits’ being so silly, holding onto the edge, falling over and colliding on the ice.
Where & when: 9.45am-10pm, Nov 3-Jan 13. Canada Square, E14 5AB. £12.50 per hour.
What: Prepare for that big winter trip to the slopes by training at this class.
It’s designed to help you work and tone all the areas your body will need, meaning you get further off-piste, are able to ski for longer and probably most importantly, reduce your chances of getting injured out there.
Where & when: 12pm-2pm, weekdays Nov-Feb. Reebok Sports Club Canary Wharf, E14 5ER. £20 per one-day membership.
What: Climb an 8m-high wall of ice hidden behind a secret door in Covent Garden. Here you can get a snippet of what the hardcore mountaineers feel when they’re climbing the planet’s highest frozen peaks. A tough, but exhilarating experience.
Where & when: 11.30am-6.30pm, Tues-Fri; 10am-6pm, Sat; 12pm-5pm, Sun. Vertical Chill, WC2E 7HA. £50 per hour, inc. gear.
What: For the lazier ‘sportsman’, you can walk through the elaborate man-made Stalagmite Cave and Ice Castle in Hyde Park’s Magical Ice Kingdom.
Keep an eye out for ice-carved woodland creatures lurking in this visual treat and grab some Facebook-worthy snaps while you’re at it. Opens 5pm, Nov 23.
Where & when: 10am-10pm, Nov 24-Jan 6. Hyde Park, W1K 7TY. £7.
Cold water swimming
What: “It’s cold, it’s bracing, it’s fucking freezing,” says bonkers group The Outdoor Swimming Society, which holds regular cold swims across the country.
It’s predicted the water will be between 0.1˚C and 6˚C on the day of their annual December Dip.
They say the experience “gets the blood pumping” and “skin tingling”. We say, “Ouch.”
Where & when: 11am-1pm, December 8, Parliament Hill Lido, NW5 1QR. Costs £15 per dipper.
What: Carving ice for 90 minutes with picks, chisels and drills is surprisingly sweaty work, but this extravagant activity is brilliant fun and you get to take your creation home with you – so make space in your freezer.
Where & when: Various times. SW17 0BA. £75.
See: More info at icesculpture.co.uk
Photos: Vertical Chill, Reebok Club, Ice Sculpture, Getty