If you’re hoping to get fit in Poland, you’ll want to walk, run or cycle.
Poland has a large community of fitness fanatics who are very active throughout the summer and winter seasons.
Walking, running and cycling are the most popular ways to get fit in Poland and with some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, you’ll always find somewhere new to explore.
Walking in Poland
There are many different places to walk throughout Poland, the chances are, wherever you are located there’s a beautiful scenic walk not far from you.
If you aren’t sure where to walk, you have two options, you can either download an app and follow a specified route, or you can do what I do and explore.
In the city, you’ll need to be aware of your surroundings, particularly near roads.
One of the most obvious differences you’re likely to notice is with zebra crossings, in Poland drivers feel like they have no obligation to stop at a zebra crossing.
This can be quite confusing, especially if like me you are from the UK, where cars will always stop to allow you to cross.
In Poland, at a zebra crossing, you’ll need to stand there and wait until a car decides to stop, which depends entirely on the driver.
You’ll also need to be aware of cycle paths, mostly painted red, they are exclusively for cyclists (e scooters also use them).
You don’t want to be that person, who’s walking in the cycle path, and blocking cyclists.
There’s also another little unwritten rule that will make yours and everyone else’s lives easier, which is to walk on the same side of the path that the cars would drive.
Polish people and people who call Poland their home stick to the right of paths, so try and always stick to the right.
Outside the city, in towns and small villages, you’ll want to make sure you have some sort of reflective clothing on and ensure you are clearly visible to drivers.
If there’s no path, people tend to walk on the left-hand side on the same side that cars are approaching from.
Cycling in Poland
In the city, the same rules apply as walking, stick to the right on your bike.
If you overtake, you’ll overtake the person on the left and it’s polite to signal your intentions to overtake, in case the person in front is turning left.
The law states that you must get off your bike to cross a main road in Poland, although in my personal experience, Polish people only tend to do this when they notice the Police.
That doesn’t mean you should follow people who do this, you should always respect the laws and rules of the country you are in.
Outside the city, you’re going to need wear a helmet, reflectors and high visibility clothing.
If you’re cycling through towns and villages, be aware of cars and trucks passing you and there’s a chance some cars might get a little close to you or pass quite closely, always ride defensively.
Lights are a must in Poland, even in the daytime, it’s a good idea to ensure your lights are on and it’s best to use the flash setting to catch a drivers attention.
In Poland, if there’s a cycle path next to a road, you must always use it.
If you’re riding on the pavement, the pedestrian is king, it’s normal for pedestrians to see you and not move because they believe you shouldn’t be cycling on the path unless you have a child with you.
Running in Poland
In the city, you’ll follow the same rules as walking, stick to the right and respect pedestrians.
You’ll also want to wear high visibility clothing if you plan to run in a busy area, this helps ensure your safety as you crossroads.
Running is one of the most popular ways to get fit in Poland, so you’ll find a lot of resources related to running in Poland to help you get started.
Outside the city, if you plan to run long distances between towns and villages in Poland, you’ll need to ensure you wear reflectors and clothing that makes you stand out.
If you need water, and you don’t see a shop nearby, you can ask a local Polish person if they can fill up your water bottle by saying “proszę daj mi wody” (you are welcome to screenshot/copy this to show them).
Where can I find people to get fit with in Poland?
Like most places in the world, Strava is a great app to meet other people who want to get fit.
There are a lot of clubs you can join, whether that’s you’re running, cycling or walking you’ll find a group for you.
You should also ask your colleagues at work, chances are, they might have a weekly or monthly meetup where they go hiking or do other outdoor activities together.
Where can I buy fitness clothing and equipment in Poland?
You can find a wide selection of fitness clothing and equipment at affordable prices at Decathlon.pl.
Decathlon stores cover most of Poland, you’ll most likely find everything you need at Decathlon but if you’re looking for more specialized or expensive gear then you’ll want to look at other online stores.
If you want to find higher quality items, then I recommend looking at Salomon, they tend to have better quality products than Decathlon but do sometimes come at a higher price.
Salomon also has stores throughout Poland, if you live in or close to a city, you’ll find a store nearby.