Break a sweat with your buddies in NYC’s most inclusive sports leagues

Members of NYC league Crux Climbing bouldering outside. (Source:

With the Winter Olympics just around the corner, some might feel inspired to go outside and be more active. Whether you love sports or just want to make friends, joining a gay sports league can be a great way to connect with other gay people in your city while staying fit.

While for many gay people sports may bring up some anxiety, LGBTQ sports leagues offer a judgment-free, harassment-free, safe environment where you can play the sport you love and be as queer as you want the entire time. In New York, there’s a gay league for just about every sport you can think of. Here’s GayCities’ guide to some of the best ones:

Gotham Volleyball


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Gotham Volleyball is the largest gay sports organization in New York. There’s something for everyone at Gotham Volleyball. With skill levels ranging from beginner to advanced, a wide variety of programs, tournaments, open-level gym nights, and leagues– Gotham has a spot for anyone who wants to play.

Big Apple Softball

With a spring and fall season, Big Apple Softball offers plenty of time to play outdoors. There are skill levels for everyone, and an end-of-season playoff tournament, too. If your team does well enough, you may even get to play in the Gay Softball World Series. Check out the helpful Q&A for new players on their website to learn more about how to join and when the next season starts.

Gotham Knights Rugby Football Club


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The Gotham Knights Rugby Football Club has opportunities for every kind of player. For those who want a more social league, sign up in the spring. For those who want to play more competitively, try playing in the fall. Even outside of those two leagues, there are lots of other ways to play at GKRFC. The organization is a part of International Gay Rugby, so you may even get to play on an international scale.

Front Runners NY

Chasing that runner’s high? Front Runners NY could be just the place you’ve been looking for. They have beginner clinics, fun runs, group walks, Pride runs, and USATF sanctioned meets. They offer even more personalized and rigorous training sessions for members.

New York Gay Pool League


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Tired of fighting for a turn at the pool table when you go out? You’ll have a guaranteed spot if you play with the New York Gay Pool League. Hang out at bars like Boxers, Metropolitan, Phoenix, Stonewall, and more while you play pool on teams throughout the season. With a spring and fall season each year that spans the majority of the year, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to play.

Big Apple Bowling, Dodgeball, and Kickball


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Big Apple Rec Sports houses three extremely accessible activities for almost anyone: bowling, dodgeball, and kickball. All three are very popular and offer a range of skill levels, from amateur to experienced. Their dodgeball page reassures prospective players, “It’s not like gym class anymore.”

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Crux Climbing


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CRUX climbing is for the more adventurous of heart. The organization empowers members of the LGBTQ community to participate in rock climbing and outdoor recreation in New York City. Even if you’ve never climbed before, the group has a monthly newbie night for those new to climbing. This could be your chance to try out the Olympic’s newest sport.

Cheer NY


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Cheer NY is a group comprised of LGBTQA+ cheerleaders. They encourage and cheer on audiences wherever they perform. What’s different about Cheer NY is that they are a charity organization that uses their performances to raise money for local LGBTQ charities. If you’re interested in trying out, fill out the tryout form on their website. All levels are encouraged to apply!

UP NEXT: Soccer, football, basketball, hockey, ping pong, and more

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