11 Ways to Meet Your Healthy Match Online
Make a love connection that shares your commitment to health and fitness with these quirky online dating sitesBy: Danielle Kosecki
Photo Credit: Thinkstock
…to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health…
If you want to emphasize the “health” portion of your vows, stop wasting time sifting through online dating sites that may or may not include members who share your passion for wellness (Related: Prevent Relationship Weight Gain). Instead, narrow down your prospective field of suitors by joining one of these niche networks. Whether you want someone who will eat vegan or help you work on your tennis game, we've got a site for you.
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Details: If you think finding your better half is largely a numbers game (the more people you date, the better chance you have of finding them), then Fitness Singles may give you the best shot: It’s the largest fitness dating website in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. (Search: How to maintain a sexy, healthy relationship) Potential love interests are matched by age, location, and fitness interests—anything from orienteering to ultrarunning.
Users: 2,000,000; nearly a 1:1 male-to-female ratio (55% male).
Cost: Browse users’ profiles and create your own for free. Anything more requires a membership, which is $35 for one month, $60 for three, or $90 for six.
Same PlateFor: Dieters
Details: When Jeff Nimoy started eating organic in 2010, he realized that if he ever wanted to get married he would have to find a woman who shared his penchant for untainted foods. Two years later, Same Plate was born. Members create a profile listing their food preferences and dietary restrictions—whether they’re on Weight Watchers, the Atkins Diet, or just love sushi—and then search for other people in their area with similar likes and dislikes. (Print it: Simple Ways to Cut 500 Calories)
Users: The site is only three months old, but membership is growing steadily with thousands of visitors daily, says Nimoy. There is just under a 1:3 male-to-female ratio.
Details: Make your search for love a little more Zen. OmSingles brings yoga lovers together to discuss common interests and find their spiritual soul mates. Members are matched using criteria they can set themselves such as personality traits, favorite types of yoga, and how often they practice. They can also interact in chat rooms and through blogs.
Users: After launching in September 2012, the site has fewer than 1,000 members, but is growing daily and has already helped facilitate one successful connection. There is a 2:3 male-to-female ratio.
Cost: OmSingles is free to join and browse, but if you want to interact with other members, you’ll have to pony up a bit of cash. Memberships options range from $8.88 per week to $148.88 per year.
Salad MatchFor: Fast foodies
Details: In 2006, New York magazine ran an article about the abundance of singles grabbing lunch at Just Salad, a Big Apple-based fast food chain that specializes in, you guessed it, healthy salads. Four years later, the owners made it easier for their young clientele to meet by creating Salad Match, an online dating portal that matches members based on their favorite restaurant location, salad toppings, and eating habits.
Users: About 5,000; 1:4 male-to-female ratio
Love at First ServeFor: Tennis singles
Details: Find your lifelong doubles partner through this highly selective site. It links people based on their tennis interests, level of expertise, and location. If you’ve never swung a racquet, but like the looks of Andy Roddick, you need not apply—50 percent of applicants are turned down due to their lack of knowledge or passion for the sport, says founder Kam Retnasami.
Users: About 2,000; 3:1 male-to-female ratio
Details: For many people, abstaining from meat isn’t just a diet choice, it’s a worldview. On VeggieDate you can search for mates based on their level of meatlessness—everyone from lacto vegetarians to raw vegans to almost vegetarians are available.
Users: 16,000, about 1:1 male-to-female ratio
Cost: Free members can read and respond to messages sent by a paid member. To initiate private contact with other members, you must be a paid member. Currently a three-month membership is $10 and a full year is $20. Prices are expected to increase soon but will continue to be very low compared to many other niche sites.
MVP DateFor: Sports nuts
Details: Sort through prospective beaus before you get to the sports bar—this site will find people in your area as fanatic about the Yankees, Redskins, or Red Bulls as you. His and hers jerseys not included.
Users: 7,228; nearly 2.1 male-to-female ratio
Passions NetworkFor: The multitalented
Details: Looking for someone who’s enthusiastic about surfing, cycling, gardening, and completing crossword puzzles? Join the Passions Network. It allows you to create one profile and then add any number of its more than 225 niche online dating and social networking sites to your account. There is no systematic “matching” system—you’re free to look for a love match within these microcosms.
Users: Nearly 3 million; about a 1:1 male-to-female ratio
EcodaterFor: Nature lovers
Details: Created in 2009, this green network doesn’t have a built-in matching system, but instead allows members to search for like-minded individuals based on eco-friendly diet preferences, interests, and activities. If you’re looking for a fellow yogi, hiker, biker, herbalist, or raw food devotee, this is your site. (Video: Cook healthy meals together)
Users: About 6,000
Details: Find someone who’ll join you for a trapeze class. This site puts the emphasis on activities by matching people via date ideas. Post your own or look for something that sounds like fun. Users can set search criteria to filter people they'd like to meet and activities they want to do. HowAboutWe will also suggest prospective matches based on your site activity.
Users: The company doesn’t publicly share how many members it has, but users have posted more than 1 million dates since the site launched in 2010. There is a 1:1 male-to-female ratio.
Cost: As a free subscriber you can create a profile and post and browse date ideas. Full-access memberships—which start at $8 a month and are available in one-month, three-month, six-month, and 12-month increments—allow you to send and receive unlimited messages, see when your messages have been opened, and respond to your “intrigues”, among other things.
Details: Whether you frequently fly across the pond or just have a soft spot for thick, British accents, Sporty Dateaway will facilitate a search for your own Kate Middleton or Prince William. Fifty-five percent of the romance seekers on this site are based in the United Kingdom, 35 percent live in the United States, and the rest reside in Canada. What they all share is an active lifestyle.
Users: About 300,000 of the Dateaway network’s two million users identify themselves as “sporty.” There is a 3:2 male-to-female ratio.
Cost: It’s free to join and browse. Memberships start from about $15 a month.
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