With apps like Tinder and Bumble, it’s never been easier to set up a date. And while it’s great that there’s now so much opportunity for romance out there, it’s also true that dating can get a bit, well, samey.
Sitting in that same nook in the local pub, ordering the same drink, seeing the same faces propping up the bar – it’s enough to make anyone give up on the whole concept of settling down.
dating in your twenties is just saying “when works for you” back and forth until one of you gets back with your ex— beth mccoll (@imteddybless) March 25, 2019
According to new research though, Brits are shaking up their dating routines by heading out on active dates in the great outdoors instead.
A survey of more than 7,600 UK adults, published by Decathlon, found that dates that involve exploring nature – such as going on a hike or a walk – are growing in popularity.
When describing their ideal date, more than 1 in 3 people surveyed said they’d prefer to do an outdoor activity than hit the pub, while 65% were up going on a date that involved exercise in the future.
As well as the obvious health benefits of keeping fit, taking part in a joint activity is a great way to fill any awkward silences. Plus, you won’t have to struggle through a hangover the next day.
Sound like your idea of fun? Here we’ve rounded up a few of our favourite active date ideas.
1. Rock climbing
Whether you’re heading to some scenic sea cliffs (not advised for beginners) or finding your feet at an indoor climbing wall, rock climbing is an awesome way to get to know someone on a new level.
As you strategically navigate your way around the wall, you can direct each other, taking on the challenge together.
It’s a great workout too: engaging your back, arms, core and quads as your pull and heave your way up the rock face. So even if you don’t hit it off with your date on a romantic level, you’ll still have reaped the benefits of a total-body workout.
2. Go for a bike ride
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Some beautiful scenery can really turn a good date into an unforgettable one – and there’s no better way to see the world than on two wheels.
If you’re blessed with great scenery on your doorstep, why not rent a couple of bikes and take on a local route with a potential partner?
If you’re not at peak fitness, cycling is also a gentle way to get active on a first date, so you don’t have to worry about ending up in a puddle of sweat when you’re going in for that first kiss.
3. Take a hike
Going for a hike can be as challenging as you want it to be. There are lots of low-key hikes around the country that only take half an hour and can lead to some beautiful nature spots like lakes, waterfalls and cliffs.
If your date sounds like they’re up for a challenge though, you could even attempt an all-day mountain hike. Just think how much closer you’ll be when you make it to the top and soak in that romantic view together.
4. Play tennis
Tennis, being a partner sport, is naturally great for couples. All you need is two rackets and a local court to play on – but you could even make do with a garden.
Not only is it a great workout, but running around the court trying to hit the ball is a great way to burn off any pre-date jitters. Trust us, it’s hard to feel nervous when your competitive spirit is fired up.
Plus, tennis is also a great insight in to how your potential partner deals with either success or failure; nobody wants to date an ungracious loser.
5. Go ice skating
If you’re a bit wobbly on the ice, ice skating is a great way to build trust with a partner. As you glide around the rink, there’s a good chance you’ll need to hold hands to stabilise one another, and the fear of falling over can provide a few laughs along the way.
The great thing about ice skating is that you can take it at a really slow pace, which gives you loads of time to learn more about your date. And if you really hit it off? You could always suggest warming up with a mug of hot chocolate or coffee afterwards too.
We don’t know about you, but that sounds way more appealing than sipping on a cheap white wine in an overcrowded bar. You can thank us later.
- Press Association