During college, Gururaj Upadhya was a badminton champion. But once he started working, he left sports behind. “After 10 years of work, I wanted to pursue badminton again,” says the 37-year-old chartered accountant from Bengaluru. Expensive club memberships would have been a waste, given that he was travelling a lot. This is when he came across Playo, an app that connects people who play sports. He not only found sports mates but also badminton courts he could book at an hourly rate. Upadhya now plays four times a week, hosts badminton matches and runs a 70-people badminton group within the app.
If, like Upadhya, you want to follow your passion for sports, here are some apps that can help you find a place and/or a partner.
Missing a social space to talk about sports? Head to Spyn. “You can ask questions to a specific sports community, tag a post with a specific sport, geographically search players, coaches, clubs and message them,” says Nayan Karnavat, the Navi Mumbai-based co-founder of Spyn. He decided to work on this app when he couldn’t find a partner to play squash with. The app currently works for Mumbai and Bengaluru.
Free on Android; iOS app launches soon; Spyn.co
GoSporto helps find a sports facility, an activity to participate in, another player, and even a team that’s open to new players. The app lists 2,503 players and 23 teams in sports such as cricket, fencing and volleyball. “We keep the scores and stats of every match that is played through us,” says Gurugram-based Nikhil Jha, co-founder of goSporto. For now, real-time booking is only available in the Delhi-National Capital Region.
Free on Web; app on Android for smartwatches launching soon; Gosporto.com
OyePlay makes it easy to find and book a badminton court or a swimming-pool class. You can discover playgrounds, training centres, tournaments, adventure sports, even coaches. “The platform is perfect for tournament organizers as we have a very good database of players and they may end up participating in the tournament,” says Hitesh Jain, chief executive officer, OyePlay. The app covers 600 venues in four cities—Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and Pune.
Free on Android; iOS release coming soon; Oyeplay.com
This app makes it easy to find a sports buddy, book a venue and discover and register for sports activities. The platform does a monthly audit of venues to ensure only top-notch ones are listed. “Next for the app is a mobile wallet and sports equipment sale (merchandising),” says Ankur Singh, the Hyderabad-based founder of GroundWala. The platform currently offers 200 sports venues in Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Pune.
Free on Android and iOS; Groundwala.in
Athletto is a marketplace where you get to choose and book a sports facility, coaches or tournaments, all through the app. “Find the closest sports arena, courts, fields, playgrounds, tournaments, events or updates on activities for your favourite sports all through the app,” says Ujwal Sutaria, founder and CEO, Athletto. Updated in December, the app also allows you to share details with playmates and invite them to play by including them in a group. Currently available in New Delhi, Gurugram, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, Chennai, Ahmedabad and Mumbai.
Free on iOS and Android; Athletto.com
Playo is a platform for the sports community. Connect with fellow sports lovers or groups in your neighbourhood, host a match, book facilities, register for tournaments, find coaches and track your performance. “Our users get hourly access to sports venues we have tied up with,” says Gauravjeet Singh, founder, Playo. The app currently works in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Delhi-National Capital Region, Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi.
Free on Android, iOS, Tizen and Windows Store; Playo.co
Sportzify helps you book a sports club on an hourly basis, participate in an event and connect with people interested in the same sports. “We also have a section where you can write stories about your sports experiences,” says Vikash Singh, CEO and co-founder of Sportzify, based in Bengaluru. Singh says they want to address every problem that a sportsperson could have, including the purchase of sports merchandise. It currently books venues for Bengaluru and Hyderabad, though it lists venues to play in Chennai, Delhi, Pune, Kolkata and Mumbai.
Free on Android; iOS launches soon; Sportzify.com
Choose a sports facility, a tournament to participate in or a mate to play with through Playcer. You can book facilities together and split the cost when paying for them. “We are currently refining our feature of matching you to a partner in the same city, in the same sport and at the same skill level,” says Gopinath Bandari, the Bengaluru-based founder of Playcer. The platform works for Gurugram and Hyderabad too, though the company holds tournaments in all major cities. The app lists over 500 sports facilities.
Free on Web and Android; Playcer.in