There are many great reasons active adults choose Green Valley, Arizona. Sports and fitness opportunities are certainly among them. Those opportunities are one reason US New and World Report has called Green Valley one the healthiest places to retire in the country.
Most households belong to Green Valley Recreation, Inc. (GVR). With facilities scattered throughout Green Valley, the whole GVR campus is every member’s playground. Along with many social, leisure and entertainment offerings, GVR members enjoy a wide variety of sports and fitness-related amenities:
- Pickleball courts
- 13 swimming pools and spas, with sun decks and lounge chairs
- Free water aerobics classes in several locations, year-round
- Six fitness centers with personal trainers available
- Tennis courts
- Racquetball and wallyball courts
- Water or sand volleyball
GVR members and the general public alike take classes in yoga, Zumba, tai chi, Lower-key, though sometimes very competitive options include bocce, shuffleboard, table tennis and billiards.
If golf is your bag, Green Valley has nine golf courses, including a par 3. When you visit, Green Valley’s thriving golf scene will be immediately evident by the number of golf carts on the streets, where they are welcome to share lanes with bikes and motor traffic.
Bicycling at all skill levels is extremely popular in Green Valley. Green Valley is part of the “Tucson and East Pima County” region that was classified as a gold level “Bicycle Friendly Community” by the League of American Bicyclists. All Green Valley thoroughfares are equipped with bike lanes (thanks to the efforts of the Santa Cruz Valley Bicycle Advocate Committee comprised of Green Valley volunteers. Quiet neighborhoods provide perfect places for leisurely pedaling and the farmer’s markets are a popular weekly destination for cyclists with baskets and trailers. Serious road cyclists from around the world participate in El Tour de Tucson, one of the US’s premier cycling events. Routes range from a quarter mile to 100 miles. Terrain varies and cyclists always enjoy the diversity of the desert landscape as they ride.
Mountain bikes are not left in the garages around here, either. Affordable tubeless tires are making desert cycling more and more popular and there are many miles of desert trails and old ranch roads all along the western flank of the community. Elephant Head, a prominent feature of the Santa Rita Mountains, boasts miles of trails for the more experienced mountain biker.
Every March since 1983, Green Valley has been the home of the Southern Arizona Senior Games, awarded “Best in Class” in 2017 by Arizona Parks and Recreation Association. Sponsored by the GVR Foundation, the Southern Arizona Senior Games attract more than 1,000 contestants from around North America for a wide variety of events that range from plain fun to serious athletics.
Green Valley is a great place to be fit and to get fit. Many people find that retirement offers them their first real opportunity since high school to focus on athletics and outdoor sports. It’s not uncommon to hear folks in Green Valley say that they are in the best shape of their lives.