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Sporting on a budget: Affordable or free sports activities

Trinity College Foundation Studies

Mon Dec 15 2014

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MANY students love to partake in sporting activities but with so many other expenses to worry about, what kind of physical activities can students undertake that’s free or affordable? Trinity College Foundation Studies students Brendan Cheong Seng Sun, Eva Stevani Wijaya and Vivienne Yang investigate. 

Feeling too stationary after sitting all day working on your assignments and needing to get a little more physical? Students aren’t all that short for options when it comes to sporting activities but some students might not be aware that there are affordable alternatives for them to be able to get more physical either at home, within their area or even at campus.

We offer a few recommendations for activities students can participate in that’s either free or cheap enough to afford.


One of the best ways to work up a sweat and feel good doing it is jogging! Unless you actually need to buy a pair of running shoes or other jogging apparel, this physical activity won’t cost you a cent! Just get out there and find a leisurely place to jog and clear your mind!

Want to make jogging feel more exciting? Creating your own workout playlist and listening to it while you jog can help you find your rhythm and inspire you to go further. Otherwise, grab a jogging buddy – you and your friend will be able to motivate each other.

Ideal jogging locations include Albert Park, which offers a beautiful lakeside jog and is located just off Albert Rd. Students living near the University of Melbourne can also jog around Princess Park, just 10 minutes away from campus.

Workout with YouTube and Phone Apps

Though some students might love to go and work out at a gym, these gym memberships can unfortunately be quite expensive.

For students who are constantly busy with school-related work and want to save some money, working out at home is a great alternative. Sure, you might not have an array of barbells or dumbbells at home, but you can still work on equally important core exercises with the help of some workout videos on YouTube.

YouTube channels including Tone It Up, Blogilates, Frugal Fitness and Fitness Blender are all worth considering for your next workout!

Alternatively, there are a multitude of fitness apps available on the market (all of them relatively cheap and affordable) to help you get into shape as well such as the The Runtastic Six Pack.


Playing badminton is a good way of exercising and also having fun with your friends. All you need is a racket, some shuttlecocks, a pair of exercise shoes, badminton court and some friends to tag along!

Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre (MSAC) is a good place to go to if you’re looking to rent a badminton court in Melbourne. The centre offers prices for as low as $12.30. If you want to play during peak time, it will cost $19.60 per hour while off-peak hours is $15.60 per hour.

The nice thing about badminton is that you cannot play alone. So, you will need a friend to play with you.

More information about MSAC including business hours, court hiring and other details can be found at their official website.


Swimming is a fun activity to do, especially on the weekend when you have time to cool off from studying.

In some places, simply paying to use the pool as an international student can be surprisingly expensive. As international students, we recommend visiting the Lincoln Square Sports Centre located in the University of Melbourne’s premises for a low price of $5.50.

For students who live in the city, the Melbourne City Baths also offer a cheap alternative for international students: $5.20 per student. Lastly, the Brunswick Public Baths price students at $4.10 per student and is by far the cheapest option.


Want to work on co-ordination? Why don’t go roller skating with your friends together?

All you’ll need to participate is a pair of rollerskates to get going but if you’re worried about hurting yourself, it might be worth investing in protective gear like elbow pads or knee pads.

Then, head down to Bayswater Roller City and get down on their roller rink. If it’s your first time on skates, don’t worry too much as you’ll be able to pay for the type of class you want to learn from them. This fun activity costs as little as $10 per per session and is even lower on Fridays!

More information on Bayswater Roller City including their business hours, lessons and prices, head over to their official website.