After a two-and-a-half year hiatus from centre stage in our calendars, festivals are making their grand return, and they’re back with a bang. Making up for all we’d missed about them during our time isolating, festivals are reviving the live music, escapism, camping, and social thrill we’ve been daydreaming of for what feels like ages.
It isn’t just Coachella and Glastonbury making a splash in this year’s festival lineup, fitness and wellness festivals are also drumming up a triumphant return across the UK. These festivals aim to leave you feeling recharged and refreshed, rather than just hungover.
From tranquil yoga retreats to adrenaline-fuelled trail running, there’s something for everyone at these fitness festivals. Let’s take a look at the events created to nurture your body and mind.
Balance Festival assembles some of the wellness industry’s finest to bring you a wellness event like no other. For as little as £15 each, standard tickets grant attendees half-day access to workouts with global fitness experts, inspiring panel discussions with wellness gurus, and delicious treats from leading mindful food and drink names.
Fitness aficionados can choose from workouts with BARRY’S, BOOM CYCLE, Barrecore, F45 and more of your favourite studios all under one roof at the Truman Brewery.
A true celebration of London’s active scene, the Balance Festival is a top-notch destination for those seeking all things wellbeing without the need to pitch a tent in a field far away.
Where: The Truman Brewery, London
When: 17 - 19 June 2022
Widely celebrated for the vibrant Hackney Half, Hackney Moves is an annual fitness festival comprising a 5K, half marathon, and a host of fantastic group activities ranging from HIIT to yoga. All roads lead to the Hackney Marshes festival village where the community in East London joins in a weekend of movement and jubilation.
Whether you’re chasing your mates through the Hackney 5K, or taking part in some of the family fun activities such as the Hackney Schools’ Challenge, the weekend has something to offer everyone. Perhaps the best part is entrance to the event is completely free, making it one of the most accessible festivals on our list.
Those seeking a challenge, can lace up for one of London’s most hotly-anticipated half marathon events. Described as an event where “culture and movement collide”, the Hackney Half is an exhilarating dash dotted with street art and live entertainment and several points on the course.
Where: Hackney Marshes, London
When: 20 - 22 May 2022
Those with a thirst for adventure, rejoice. The team behind Love Trails Festival have organised 4 days and 4 nights packed with outdoor excursions (although you don’t need to be there for all 4 nights!).
During the day, attendees can enjoy non-competitive trail running, trips to the beach, wellness and adventure activities, inspiring talks, heavenly food and laidback music selections. By night, cherry-picked DJ’s and live acts take to three different stages to bring the party. Dance under the stars till the early hours of the morning.
Expect a wide range of quality music, blissful days on the trails, an intimate atmosphere and a community of outdoor enthusiasts.
The festival takes place on the idyllic Gower Peninsula in Wales, and is conveniently away from the hustle and bustle of the city yet connected by a mere 3hr train journey from London. A perfect balance of challenge, adventure, entertainment, and relaxation, Love Trails offers a truly special fitness festival experience.
Where: Gower Peninsula, Wales
When: 30 June - 3 July 2022
Wilderness is an eclectic mix of music, art, food, and wellbeing. Never failing to deliver an impressive music lineup, some of the names to shake things up at Wilderness include Year & Years, Jungle, Robyn, Bombay Bicycle Club and more.
But it isn’t just the live music that makes this 4-day festival compelling. Set in a stunning nature reserve, Wilderness feels like a boutique experience. It blends music, contemporary art, theatre, craftsmanship and dining in this unique, award-winning festival.
After a boogie to your favourite live music acts, attendees can take part in a number of wellbeing activities. Jump in the lake for a wild swim, or hang out (literally) doing some aerial yoga. Better yet, do both during a paddleboard yoga session. In terms of ‘what’s on’ at Wilderness, your imagination is the limit.
Where: Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire
When: 4 - 7 August 2022
Looking for a blissful day away in the English countryside? Look no further than the Verve Wellness Festival. Whether you’re into yoga and gong baths, or throwing shapes on the dance floor,
Verve has a programme with activities for the whole family. This one-day festival set in a picturesque reserve in Wiltshire is a celebration of health, wellness, and nature.
A yogi’s ideal day out, festival goers can choose to start the day with Prana Yoga and close the show with an Om & Bass Chakra Shakedown. For those seeking to reconnect with nature, a bit of forest bathing is sure to satisfy.
One of the great elements of Verve is its programme of kid-friendly activities, making this a wonderful opportunity to introduce children to meditation while having fun outside.
Where: Hatch House, Wiltshire
When: 17 September 2022
A short train from London will land you at LoveFit Festival. A 3-day adventure of fitness, wellbeing, and forest parties in a leafy estate in Kent. LoveFit combines fitness with the very best parts of a music festival.
Jam packed activities with some of the UK’s best trainers and studios, you’ll have the chance to do a little bit of everything on offer over the weekend.
Find balance by day, enjoying an array of adventure activities as well as fitness sessions, trail running, yoga, meditation, aerial and pole classes. Chill-out in wood-fired hot tubs, enjoy heavenly food and blissful music. Lose yourself in the night, by dancing under the stars to live DJ sets. Don’t miss out on this epic weekend of fun!
Where: St. Clere Estate, Kent
When: 15 - 17 July 2022
Escape to the circus where wellbeing meets music at this holistic yoga and arts festival set in the rural Cotswolds countryside. Soul Circus is a festival where music, yoga and holistic therapies meets glittery festival antics and DJ after parties.
It is set to return to its home in the Cotswold hills of Elmore, Gloucestershire in 2022. Stretch out in yoga yurts and lush countryside by day and dance under the stars by night.
Think sunrise yoga sessions and immersive DJ sets in an electrifying atmosphere. Festival goers will also have the chance to recharge at the Soul Spa. From beauty treatments to holistic therapies, hot tub and sauna, select your restorative therapies and allow yourself to unwind before jumping back into this boutique festival programme.
Where: Elmore, Gloucestershire
When: 19 - 21 August 2022
THE BIG RETREAT
Set in the historic parkland of Lawrenny, Pembrokeshire, The Big Retreat invites you to a three-day weekend of feel-good fun. The aim of The Big Retreat team is for attendees to leave the festival feeling better than when they arrived.
With a host of activities and treats planned for all five senses, chances are they’ll hit their mark. Explore over 200 carefully curated experiences, classes, workshops, and inspirational talks.
The unspoiled western edge of Wales is an idyllic escape from modern life, and offers the perfect environment to experience your favourite activities in the invigorating fresh air. Discover energy, inspiration, bands, books, new tastes and inner calm at this uplifting festival experience.
Where: Lawrenny, Pembrokeshire
When: 3 - 6 June 2022
KENDAL MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL
While Kendall plays host to the popular music festival, Kendall Calling, this town in the Lakes celebrates the natural splendour at its doorstep during the four-day long Kendal Mountain Festival. The annual event is dedicated to sharing awe-inspiring, life-affirming stories from the world of outdoor adventure.
One of the most diverse festivals of its kind, Kendal Mountain Festival brings together filmmakers, adventurers, and thought-provoking lecturers together with the goal of inspiring more people to explore and enjoy mountains.
Since its beginning in the 1980’s, the festival has drawn sports fans and outdoor enthusiasts to the Lake District town each November to take part in the festivities.
The prorgramme is a high-octane mix of film and adventure sport, with over 700 participants routinely taking part in a scenic 10km trail run. It’s the ultimate gathering for everyone who loves the outdoors.
Where: Kendall, Cumbria
When: 17 - 20 November 2022
After years of waiting, we can finally look forward to the return of our favourite fitness festivals. Glastonbury isn’t the only event that you can shake things up in a glittery mess of fun!
Fitness festivals are a great way to balance workouts and the bits you love about a classic music festival. With so many exciting weekends organised this year, the only question now is which one (or ones) will you be going to?