We get it: life with kids is busy! But there are some fabulous Central Coast fitness businesses going the extra yards to ensure you don’t have to sacrifice exercise and “you” time once you become a parent. We’ve found some incredible Central Coast gyms that have no lock-in memberships, flexible hours and – booyah – a creche for your kids. Plus, we’ve found some wonderful outdoor fitness groups that run postpartum (i.e. pelvic floor-friendly) classes and mums ‘n’ bubs bootcamps.

So stop thinking about it and just do it. Your body – and mind – will thank you for it.

Active Fitness, Doyalson

Active Fitness in Doyalson is a great option for parents as it offers a heap of flexibility: they’re open 24/7, they have standard as well as flexible memberships that can be cancelled with just 30 days’ notice and the creche is open for multiple hours each day.

The gym has four fitness zones and offers more than 65 indoor and outdoor group exercise classes every week: Les Mills’s Bodypump, Bodystep, Core and Bodycombat, six types of yoga (such as hot yoga and yogalates) as well as cycle, run club, boot camp and more.

The creche is open for children aged 6 weeks to 13 years and has a dedicated team of childcare-trained educators who are passionate about creating an enjoyable experience for your children, so you can happily exercise knowing your tots are being well taken care of. The creche has flexible hours too – open morning and evening six days a week – making it ideal for busy families and working parents.

And – massive bonus – the creche is incredibly good value. On top of your membership, it’s just $9/week for 1 child; $13/week for 2 children; $15/week for 3+ children or $5.50/child for a casual visit.

Special Offer: Mention Playing in Puddles and Sign up at Active Fitness HQ and receive 2 weeks free creche

Gym with Creche: Yes.
Fitness Passport accepted: Yes!
Opening hours: 24/7. (staffed hours Mon-Thurs 5.30am – 7.30pm, Fri 5.30am – 4pm, Sat 7.30am – 11.30am).
Where: 80 Pacific Highway, Doyalson.
Phone: 0243 906 333
Email: [email protected]
Website: https://activefitnesshq.com.au/creche
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/activefitnesshq
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/activefitnesshq/

EMF Erina Fitness Centre, Erina Fair shopping centre

We’re excited to announce that EMF Fitness Centre recently opened at Erina Fair!

This 24/7 gym kicks goals when it comes to our wants list, PLUS it has that bit EXTRA: I’m looking at you, in-house Smoothie Bar! Yep, we squealed at that inclusion too!

The fitness centre is split into three main training areas – Strength, Cardio and Functional training – so you can come and do your own thing, or join in one of the many group classes, including hot yoga, reformer pilates, boxing, pump and more. They’re open 24/7 and they have flexible memberships with no lock-in contracts, so no matter how you like to train or when, this gym fits the bill. As well as the aforementioned smoothie bar (whoop whoop), they also have a traditional sauna for after-gym workouts and those “I-need-a-break” days.

And, importantly, they have a creche staffed by experienced caregivers, so you can get your workout done without interruption.

Erina Fair EMF Fitness Centre

Gym with Creche: Yes.
Fitness Passport accepted: No.
Opening hours: 24/7. (staffed hours Mon-Thurs 6am – 8pm, Fri 6am – 7pm, Sat 7am – 4pm, Sun 9am – 3pm).
Where: Erina Fair EMF Fitness Centre, Erina Fair, Terrigal Dr, Erina (near Rebel Sport and Uniqlo).
Phone: 0492 055 441.
Email: [email protected]
Website: https://emfpc.com.au/clubs/emf-fitness-centre-erina-fair/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/emfaus/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/emf_erinafair/

Fernwood Fitness Central Coast

Ladies, are you looking for something a little exclusive? Did you know that Fernwood Fitness opened at Erina Fair in 2022, and it’s women only!

Fernwood Fitness prides itself in being a holistic centre for fitness, health and wellness and a space dedicated to helping women reach their goals in a safe and encouraging environment.

They have state-of-the-art facilities and an absolutely fantastic creche with a custom-built play centre – whoop whoop – that means it won’t be difficult to get your kids there so much as getting them to leave. We’re excited to share, too, that the creche is open for extensive hours – 6 days a week plus three evenings – so it caters to shift workers, office workers and stay-at-home mums.

They have a huge gym floor featuring premium cardio machines and an extensive range of weight training equipment. There’s a large range of group classes to choose from: stretch and recentre with a calming yoga session, or get your heart rate pumping with Fernwood’s signature HIIT workout program. Plus there’s Zumba, Body Balance, Reformer Pilates and lots more – catering from beginners all the way to experts. They even have a dedicated HYPOXI studio where you can access a low-impact weightloss training program, and let’s not forget that all-important infrared sauna! Bliss!

Fernwood Fitness Central Coast

Gym with Creche: Yes.
Opening hours: 24/7. (Staffed hours Mon – Thurs 8am – 8pm, Fri 8am – 5pm, Sat 8am – 12 noon, Sun 8am – 11am). Creche hours: Mon – Fri 9am – 12pm, Sat 8am – 11am, Mon – Wed evening 5.30pm – 7.30pm.
Where: Fernwood Fitness, Erina Fair, Terrigal Dr, Erina (Next to ToyMate).
Phone: 9000 5656.
Email: [email protected]
Website: https://www.fernwoodfitness.com.au/clubs/central-coast
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/fernwoodcentralcoast
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/fernwoodcentralcoast

Impact Gym, Erina

Impact Gym has a little bit of everything on offer and that’s why we love it. Want to exercise with your baby? Come for their “Mums and Pram” classes. Prefer to exercise without your tot? Take advantage of their fabulous creche which includes a multi-level play maze, a separate baby, toddler, and preschooler area, a sensory play area, AND a fantastic pre-school program that incorporates fine motor skill activities and crafts!

Impact has 90+ classes available each week, a dedicated leg room, plus they boast an outdoor training area for those days when it’s just too stunning to exercise indoors. There’s also a sauna and an on-site cafe that dishes up tasty meals, such as smashed avocado with tomato, feta and pesto, or acai bowls packed with fruit and granola. You’re able to use the creche for two hours, so there’s ample time to work out, take a sauna and grab a bite to eat – all kid free! Bliss!

At Impact they’re keen to get not just your bod in shape but your mind and mood too. On hand to help you out on your journey is a team of coaches, trainers, nutritionists, mental performance coaches and group fitness instructors. We really like their holistic approach to health and fitness, plus Impact’s strong sense of community. We know you will too!

+ WANT TO KNOW MORE? Check out Playing in Puddles’ review on Impact Gym.

Impact Gym

Gym with Creche: Yes.
Fitness Passport accepted: Yes!
Gym opening hours: 24/7 gym access. Staffed hours are Monday – Thursday 5am – 8pm, Friday 5am – 7pm, Saturday 7am – 3pm, Sunday 9am – 12 pm.
Creche opening hours: Monday – Friday 8:45am – 1pm, Sat 7.30am – 10:45am
Where: 19 Chetwynd Road, Erina
Phone: 02 4367 6767
Email: [email protected]
Website: https://impactgym.com.au/
Facebook: Impact Gym Erina
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/im.gymerina

VHAB, multiple locations across the Central Coast

VHAB is a local exercise class designed specifically for women post-birth, and we’re wishing it upon every new mum.

VHAB (a.k.a. vagina and core rehab – yep, we love the cheeky name too!) is a six-week program that shows you how to correctly and gently rebuild your body and strength after a vaginal birth or c-section, so you can safely return to exercise. VHAB is an evidence-based program run by accredited university-qualified exercise physiologists who help you to re-engage and rebuild both your pelvic floor and deep core muscles. The exercises are taught in a way to help reduce long-term complications, such as prolapse and incontinence and to assist with abdominal separation so that you can return to more strenuous exercise without further weakening your body.

The program takes place at multiple locations across the Central Coast, and once you’ve completed the 6 weeks you can move into their Advanced VHAB programs or pelvic floor-happy bootcamps. Babies and toddlers are VERY welcome – owner/trainer Alison is a gem at stroller rocking and baby nursing – and you can take time out as needed to feed, burp, nappy change, etc. They’ll even create a new group specifically for your mothers’ group! Yep, we were excited by this news too!

+ WANT TO KNOW MORE? Check out Playing in Puddles review: “Returning to exercise after birth? Do it safely with VHAB!”

VHAB, Multiple locations

To find a group, check out the VHAB community Facebook Group. Or, if you’d like to chat further about creating your own group for you and your mother’s group friends at a time that suits you, get in touch with Alison via the VHAB Facebook page.

When: VHAB runs Monday to Friday.
Where: Classes run in Terrigal, Kincumber, Bateau Bay, Holgate, Killarney Vale and Avoca. Some locations are indoors and some are outside in the sunshine.
Phone: Alison, 0405 150 240.
Email: [email protected]
Website: https://vhab.com.au/
Facebook: VHAB’s Facebook page; VHAB’s Facebook group
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/VHAB_aus/

Check out these other fitness options across the Central Coast, too.

BUMP Erina. Check out Playing in Puddles’ review.

Strong Mums. Check out Playing in Puddles’ review.

Coast Fitness HQ: gym with creche.

Mingara One Fitness: gym with creche.

All Sorts Wyong: gym with creche.

Peninsula Leisure Centre: gym and pool with creche.

Crossfit Karuna: gym with creche.

Marquise Mums: gym you can bring your babies to.

This feature was created in partnership with Active Fitness Doyalson, VHAB, Impact, Fernwood Central Coast, and EMF.

+ Want your gym business to be included too? Reach out to our advertising team on [email protected].


Founder & Editor

After working in print and online media for more than a decade, Katie launched Playing in Puddles in 2017. A mum of two young boys and local of the Central Coast, Katie loves discovering and sharing all that’s happening in our region. 



Alison is a busy local mum who enjoys exploring the Coast’s spectacular natural spaces. You’ll often find her out on a bush trail with her husband and three kids. With a background in media production, communication and marketing, she loves sharing stories about the wonderful region we get to call home. Follow her on Instagram @CentralCoastNatureKids.



Louise spent a decade in the publishing industry writing for children and was the editor of K-Zone magazine prior to moving to the Central Coast in 2018. These days you’ll find her wrangling her toddler at playgrounds all over the Coast, and creating content from a cosy corner in her living room.