The beautiful Nordbad swimming pool complex has, in its basement, an ultra-modern fitness center. Located between my childrens’ Kindergarten and school, it seemed a logical choice and it’s one I haven’t regretted in the five years I have been working out there! Built in 1941, the Nordbad was part of the ‘Körperkultur’ ideals of the Nazi empire. It was built in neoclassical style, fitting in with the aesthetic ideals of Nazi architecture. The building was severely damaged at the end of the war, but rebuilt in its original style.
The swimming pool
Despite this ominous beginning, Nordbad has been nothing but positive for Munich. The enormous swimming hall is characteristic of the grandiose style of the era. The main pool is 33 x 13m with viewing stands, used during competitions, on both sides and beautiful mosaic wall decorations. This pool has 2 jumping boards and is used by competition swimmers and recreation swimmers alike. There is an outside area with spa pools. Heated to 34 degrees Celsius, the open-air spa pools are open year-round. There is a huge grass area for sunbathing and playing, as well as a small kid’s pool and playground with swings.
The fitness centre
One caveat… to use the fitness center, you have to become a member. As an added benefit, you get access to all the swimming facilities as well! While the fitness centre doesn’t have any facilities for kids, the pool complex does and I have often used my membership deal to swim there with my kids.
When you join, if you want to start working out on the machines, on your first day you will be accompanied by a personal trainer who will show you how to use them and setup a program for you depending on your needs and goals. You might choose to focus on building muscle, weight loss, or just generally improving your overall condition. My initial program was 20 minutes on the Stairmaster or on the treadmill, followed by leg exercises, abs, and finally back and arms. The program took me about 45 minutes to complete. I was given a personal sheet where I could note my progress. It was great… but then I discovered group classes.
The group classes at the Nordbad fitness center are truly excellent. My favourite class, Hot Iron, has unfortunately been taken off the program, but I still do yoga, body shaping and Pilates regularly. When I feel extra fit I take a Zumba class on Saturday! Full course information is available on the Nordbad website.
The classes can get very full so make sure you are on time, at least 15 minutes before classes start. You have to bring your own drink and towel and shoes which are for inside use only. There are classes in the morning and in the (late) afternoon and evening, so you can choose a time that suits you. There are no classes in English: all classes are given in German only.
Fitness centre memberships are either for mornings or afternoons, so consider carefully when you will be doing most of your workouts! If you are interested in working out at the Nordbad there is an option for a Probestunde (trial session). Just ask at the entrance: people are friendly and will be happy to help you with further information! Please also note the fact that the Nordbad does not offer childcare. Access to the sauna facilities can be included in your membership at a slight price increase. For full price information and options visit the Nordbad website.
Location & contact information
The Nordbad (literally ‘north pool’) is located in the north of Munich, in the Schwabing West area, on Schleißheimerstraße. You can reach it with the 12 or 27 tram, bus 53, 59 or 154 (get off at Nordbad) or by a short walk from the U2/U8 station Hohenzollernplatz.
Schleißheimer Straße 142
Tel: +49 89 2361-7953
Mare Storm came to Munich from Amsterdam, in 2005, to be with the love of her life. She wishes LMBB would have been there in the first difficult years she spent in here. Two daughters and 11 years later she’s fully integrated. Her goal now is to help others find their way in Munich! Being fit and healthy is at the core of her lifestyle and she’s happy to show you around Munich’s fitness jungle.