The modest workout areas of the capital's parks are getting replaced with sports clusters. These multifunctional areas are equipped with everything you might need to perform a wide range of physical activities such as tennis, baseball, the traditional Russian game of gorodki, and much more. In this article, you'll find out about a number of locations that might come as a surprise even to professionals.
Brateyevskaya Poyma Park was created in 2018 in a vast abandoned area. The concept of the park was developed by the city's residents themselves, with the majority of voters on the Active Citizen portal expressing their desire for the recreation area to have a focus on sports. The result is a project unprecedented for the Russian capital.
The park features 12 sports areas, including a football pitch (which turns into an artificial ice rink in winter), a mini-football pitch, a parkour course, 2 workout areas, a skate park, a basketball court, 2 volleyball courts, a table tennis court, and a tennis court, as well as a sports ground for playing gorodki. Away from the park's noisy walking paths you'll find a yoga space with timber decking. The park is thoughtfully laid out, with its various areas situated and equipped in such a way that guests can enjoy their visit without getting in each other's way. For cycling enthusiasts, one of the first areas of the park to be set up was a 13-kilometre-long bikeway, which transforms into a ski track in winter.
However, the main feature of Brateyevskaya Poyma Park is its baseball stadium. The stadium conforms to all the relevant standards: it's a perfect diamond equipped with bleachers, changing rooms, and showers. The stadium hosts training sessions for the Spartak amateur baseball club and Russian Amateur Baseball League matches. Visitors are unlikely to be allowed into the stadium 'just to play', though anyone interested in training might have a chance of qualifying for one of the teams.
In 2019, as part of the My District programme, the forested area and old football pitch near the village of Vatutinki (Desenovskoye settlement) was transformed into a new sports park.
At the heart of the park stands an open football stadium. There is also a running track around the edge of the pitch, as well as a basketball court and a volleyball court at either end. The stadium also has a special area for tests as part of the Ready for Labour and Defence programme. The park-based sports cluster also features a hockey rink (used as a mini-football pitch in summer), a sports ground for playing gorodki, a pump track, a workout area, and a network of bikeways and footpaths.
Sokolniki Park offers a wide range of sport activities at any time of year. In winter, you can visit the park's Lyod ('Ice') all-weather skating rink to train in figure skating (paid, ages 14 to 50). During the cold season, the park operates a 1.5-kilometre-long dry ski slope (ski rental is available).
Fans of alternative sports will enjoy Sokolniki's extreme sports park, including the JustJump trampoline arena with an area of around 400 square metres. Here you will find 40 trampolines (including 14 vertical ones), a soft foam pit, and experienced acrobatics and gymnastics coaches. You can also learn to skateboard at the park (the skate park underwent a complete overhaul in 2018) and wakeboard (the wakeboarding school by the Bolshoy Putyaevsky pond operates in summer).
For athletes, the park has the Spark sports complex (general physical training, fitness, gymnastics), while those who prefer to exercise in the fresh air can take advantage of the workout areas at the Leader sports entertainment centre (indoor and outdoor football pitches, volleyball, badminton, and tennis courts). Running enthusiasts can join in with the BiT club ('Run and Train' club), which offers running programmes and crossfit classes.
As part of the Moscow Longevity project, retired people are invited to take classes at the Gorod Tantsa ('The City of Dance') dance studio and the park's qigong courses, while the chess and checkers club welcomes visitors of all ages – even the youngest ones.
The park located in Pechatniki is notable for its uniqueness. There's nothing else in Moscow like the Motorised Sports Park. The park was founded on the site of a former unsanctioned dump near the Kuryanovsk aeration stations. Around 2 million cubic metres of leftover building materials, solid and household waste were removed as part of the landscaping process for the rubbish-strewn abandoned urban wasteland. The area's remoteness from residential areas has proved to be a major advantage, as it has resulted in a place where people can do truly extreme sports without disturbing the district's residents with intense activity and noise. Getting to the park is quite easy, as there's a bus route going from Pechatniki Metro station to Kuryanovsky Terminal.
The park is divided into 5 clusters, each of which has a specialised track. The park's 1,000-metre multifunctional ring road with sharp turns is suitable for car and motorbike enthusiasts. There is also a dedicated track for motorsports in the form of a closed circuit with natural obstacles (1,880 metres). Sporty types can also make the most of a cycle speedway (205 metres), a skate park (more than 600 square metres), and a kart circuit (1,000 metres).
All of the Motorised Sports Park's tracks are designed with both professional competitions and amateur races in mind. Meanwhile, those who prefer a more peaceful environment can visit a conventional and comfortable bike track almost 2 kilometres long, as well as a pedestrian zone that stretches along the banks of the Moskva River.
Another project included in the 2019 My District programme is Cherkizovsky Children's Park. This site underwent extensive landscaping work before the Preobrazhenskoye District became home to a major cluster of extreme and alternative sports facilities.
The park's rugby stadium has been completely overhauled: its artificial turf has been replaced with natural turf, a new goal has been installed, and a running track has been created around the pitch. Today, a 4,000-square-metre area inside the park is occupied by a skate park and a pump track equipped with skill obstacles suitable for amateurs and professionals alike. These facilities offer rental services to those who don't have their own board or scooter yet. The park also has a new all-purpose court with artificial turf. It is equipped with football goals and basketball posts, allowing visitors to play football, volleyball, basketball, or streetball.
For those who enjoy strength training in the fresh air, the park features a standard workout area complete with the necessary training equipment. In addition to the usual exercise equipment, you can also find adaptive equipment designed for people with limited mobility. The park also has a large area with table tennis tables and a kilometre-long bikeway.
My Region programme of the Moscow Mayor offers equal development terms for all city districts considering their specifics. The programme takes into account the opinions and needs of residents of specific districts, builds new spaces for recreation, sports, and cultural entertainment, renovates old ones, and creates a convenient urban environment. From now on, a comfortable and modern city is not just about the city centre.
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