Free and Affordable Recreational & Social Sports this winter in Toronto

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We know, we knowww… Indoor sports are significantly more expensive! But here we are, faced with the inevitable winter looming in the background, and only a few more weeks to make commitments to indoor teams in Toronto.

Joining a rec sport and/or league in Toronto can be affordable, with many options for individuals to play in conventional and unusual sports leagues. Here is a list of affordable indoor sports choices we’ve compiled to help you narrow down your choices.

If you’re looking for players to fill up spots on your team, use the OpenSports app to find players, sorted by sport, gender, skill level, and availability. It’s pretty sweet.

Basketball

Basketball universally tends to be one of the more affordable sports to play with lots of opportunities for free pickup and drop-in throughout the city (ahem… Grange Fitness). However, there are some pretty legit leagues if you are looking for a more structured experience.

Grange Fitness
Grange Fitness, located around OCAD, offers free drop-in basketball and table tennis downtown Toronto, several times per week, among various other sports. New sports are being added to their free drop-in schedule such as futsal and pickleball. They even have a rock climbing wall that they are looking to resurrect! Check their schedule for the latest times and dates.

Bonus: $34–44 a month will get you access to everything at this facility! Swimming, yoga, the entire renovated fitness facility and all if its classes (spinning, bootcamps, etc) AND personal trainers. Seriously, such a steal.

HoopDome
HoopDome is an amazing Toronto facility, located slightly north of the city in Downsview Park, across from the subway station. It gears to a more competitive crowd. They also only offer programming for men. Prices vary based on length of the league. Registration for winter will be closing soon.

The individual cost for 11 weeks is $149.56 + $19.44 (HST) =$169.00.

The individual cost for 15 weeks is $196.90 + $25.60 (HST) =$222.50.

The Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre League
This spot offers programming for both men and women as well as co-ed leagues. They have drop in basketball and a lot of other sports. The rules and policies can be found here for more information. Here is the schedule for the gym schedule in January. Games are played at a gym on Spadina and Bloor by the subway station. The league starts in November and runs until March.

Joining costs members of the centre $144 and non-members $180 per individual. Jerseys are included in the cost.

Soccer (Indoor)

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There are lots of options for both indoor and outdoor rec soccer in Toronto. If you’re a student, your best bet is to join college/university intramurals. They are highly subsidized and often “free” because you already pay for them through student fees.

Soccerworld Polson Pier
Soccerworld in Polson Pier boasts one of the best indoor locations in the city. Soccerworld offers co-ed as well as women’s and men’s leagues. The deadline for the men’s, women’s and coed league is January 22 so if you are interested sign up quick. All games are indoor and 6v6.

You can also play pickup soccer and you can find the schedule here.

Toronto Recreational Sports League
The Toronto Recreational Sports League mostly serves adults living and working in the Yonge & Eglinton community. They have co-ed and men’s and women’s only offerings. You can register for the upcoming season anytime.

They have soccer, volleyball, dodgeball and basketball leagues that you can join for the winter. Prices vary on which sport league you want to join, but prices start as low as $110 and as high as $230 for the winter season.

Toronto Soccer Connection

You can check out TSC pickup games through our app. There’s lots of tournaments and leagues that are starting to begin or coming up and would be great if you could grab some of your friends and join in on a tournament or pickup game.

They have a coed tournament coming up on February 18 that is going to be amazing. The level is intermediate to competitive players and the cost is $280 + HST. Register here or check out their website for more information.

Ultra Sports

Ultra Sports opened in 2010 and is a privately owned sporting complex. It is just under 50,000 sq ft and they have two large fields and courts. They are a state of the art indoor facility located at 1510 Birchmount Road, that offers drop-in soccer on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Cost, time and how to register/pay can all be done on the website. All games are 7v7 with a max of 21 players. They also have drop-in coed basketball for $5 a game.

Softball (Softball players rejoice! There is indoor softball in TO!)

Toronto Sport and Social Club
The Toronto Sport and Social Club is one of the big players in rec sports. It’s a great place to meet people and they rent out really nice facilities. There are single gender and co-ed options. You can register for the next season at anytime but fall registration has closed. They offer outdoor softball in the warm months and indoor in the cold.

It costs $199 for an individual to play indoor softball (there’s still a few spots left!)

The “Other” sports

Underwater Hockey (aka “Octopush”) 6 v 6

Legit. The co-ed club plays weekly at the Trinity-Bellwoods pool in downtown Toronto for $13–17/session (aka 13 sessions under $200- that’s like a whole indoor soccer season). You just bring a swimsuit and a towel, and they will provide the rest of the gear unless you have your own (Swimming fins, Mask, Snorkel, UWH stick, UWH glove). For more information check out their website for costs, prices, equipment and more information.

Axe throwing
Is axe throwing a sport? Well, its competitive. It requires coordination, discipline, and a bit of hand movement. So, yes? But that’s for you to decide.
Axe throwing is one of the coolest new things to do it Toronto. It’s also a BYOB activity so there’s obviously a waitlist to join a league.

The cost for an axe throwing season of BATL is $119.47 +tax for an eight week league and leagues are mixed gender.

Pickleball (aka the love child of Table Tennis + Tennis + Badminton)
There truly is a sport called pickleball, and this is your time to be an early adopter and gain all the skills before everyone else… so hop on the bandwagon now! The Pickleball community is still developing and growing (quite explosively). There aren’t formal leagues yet but there are plenty of tournaments to join for little cost. You can find places to play here and people to play with here.

Freebies

Bike Polo
Bike polo is exactly how it sounds: polo on a bike. The league plays every second Friday night, indoors (11pm-2am). The location sometimes changes, so you have to keep on top of their social media accounts, but in the spring, they take the bikes to outdoor spaces like Dufferin Grove Park Court. Bike polo is free but you must also BYOB (bring your own bike ;) ).

Toronto Soccer Connection Free Pick Up Soccer

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Toronto Soccer Connection (aka TSC) offers Sunday morning outdoor pick up downtown on turf…and will play well into the fall….but you need to join in on the game right away because the list of attendees fills up REAL QUICK. We love that they always reserve a chunk of spots for women. TSC hosts soccer tournaments in Toronto several times a year and sometimes have free men’s and women’s indoor pickup downtown. Find them on Facebook to join their amazing community and get notifications about when their pickup spots open. This is a seriously fun and inclusive group. Look no further than the photo above to see some of the shenanigans that break out at any time!

OpenSports Free Pick Up Soccer

OpenSports has been providing free pickup since May 2016, at different Toronto locations in Little Italy, Scarborough, and UofT’s front campus. We have welcomed a really fun community of players and we will be playing until… probably until it snows. All skill levels welcome, and we play on Friday and Saturday mornings. Download the app to join in!

So there you have it. Camaraderie mixed with competition is a recipe for a much more pleasant winter, so scrape up that extra $200 and join in on something that you will enjoy playing!

Cheers!

Do you manage a facility? Want to be featured in one of our articles, or have your facility’s schedule and pricing on our sports app? Contact alicia@opensports.ca

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Inspiring stories about organizing and playing pick-up/drop-in sports. Create and find games on our amazing app & website 🏀⚽️🏐🎾🏃🏼 https://opensports.net

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