Lander & Rogers' Sports Business Group is the leading sports law practice in Australia, representing over 150 national and international sporting bodies. Our clients include international…read more
South Eastern Sydney Local Health District takes a lead with advice on outdoor gyms
With a growing number of outdoor gyms and fitness trails being installed at parks, reserves and beaches across Australia, the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District (SESLHD) Health Promotion Service is taking a lead in backing their installation, along with issue advice on their use and undertaking research into their benefits.
The recent SESLHD publication 'How to Use an Outdoor Gym' contains information for first time users, based on 12 items of popular outdoor gym equipment.
Advice is aimed at beginner, intermediate and advanced level, with recommendations that exercisers, warm up; then use the resistance and balance aspects of each piece of equipment with repetitions; followed by stretching.
The publication also urges that users who "are unsure about any of the exercises (should) consult a health professional before attempting the exercise(s)."
SESLHD 's emphasis on using outdoor gyms is focussed on seniors as part of the NSW Government's NSW Ageing Strategy. The Strategy aims to engage the Government and communities in planning for the challenges of an ageing population with one of the key visions for the strategy being that seniors will experience the benefits of living longer if they lead active lives and are connected to their communities.
An example of this was the recent opening of a Seniors Outdoor Gym at Maroubra Beach, its $60,000 installation jointly funded by Randwick Council and the NSW Government. Boasting inspiring views over the beach, easy access to public transport, car park facilities and public toilets, the range of strength and cardio equipment is also accompanied by instructive signage.
Since opening, the beachside location of the Gym is attracting users and opportunities for interaction between the young and old.
While a 2010 undergraduate study estimated there were more than 60 in Sydney, outdoor gyms are rapidly gaining popularity in communities across Australia and they offer unique benefits.
Writing in the Sydney Morning Herald, Walkley award winning health writer Paula Goodyer explained "there are big advantages to fresh air gyms.
"Number one is they're free so lack of money for gym membership is no barrier to accessing equipment to improve muscle strength or cardiovascular fitness.
"They're also great for anyone who feels intimidated by regular gyms and that includes older people who can really benefit from getting stronger.
"(And) thirdly, combining exercise with natural environments can be a mood-booster. We already know that exercise can improve mental health and there's also growing evidence that being in green spaces helps too."
In practice, Exercise and Sports Science Australia spokesperson Dr Jarrod Meerkin sees the benefits of outdoor gums, explaining that "(users) can gradually increase the number of times (they) do a circuit of the equipment, (combining)e a circuit with a jog around the park – and … download(ing) a mobile app with an interval training program that can help (the user) get fitter or stronger by alternating 'sprints' of intense exercise with working out at a slower pace."
Explaining the evolution of outdoor gyms, Dean Joel, Managing Director of Australasian Playgrounds, whose Fit-for-Parks outdoor gym equipment was installed at Maroubra Beach and which feature in the 'How to Use an Outdoor Gym' publication, states "early versions of outdoor gyms consisted of chin-up bars, dip bars and other static items only accessible to already strong and fit individuals.
"In recent years a number of more accessible formats were introduced incorporating levers and other moving parts. However, many of these have been either unreliable or unsafe with nasty pinch points and crush points.
"This year, following four years of research and development, (we introduced) a new locally designed and manufactured range ... Fit-for-Parks.
"The new Fit-for-Parks range has been developed to be broadly accessible, durable and safe. In the absence of specific outdoor gym equipment standards the new Fit-for-Parks range meets Australian Playground Equipment Standards (AS4685).
"It has also been designed to stand up to the harsh Australian environment with an optional 'marine grade' specification available for coastal locations.
"Importantly the Fit-for-Parks range offers accessibility for people of all ages and fitness levels. Equipment is grouped into Cardio, Strength and Flexibility categories to offer a well rounded fitness solution."
SESLHD is also undertaking research into the benefits of outdoor gyms and is planning to issue the results of this research along with further resources on outdoor gyms in the near future.
Click here to view 'How to Use an Outdoor Gym'.
18th October 2012 - FIT-FOR-PARKS INTRODUCES A NEW GENERATION OF OUTDOOR FITNESS EQUIPMENT
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
iEDM integrate Design, Engineering and Delivery Management services to convert existing spaces into exciting new entertainment venues. Our team consists of highly qualified professionals with diverse…read more
NovoFit is an exciting and dynamic new company born from two of Australia’s leading commercial fitness equipment suppliers. NovoFit combines over 45 years of industry expertise, delivering state…read more
PathMinder Pty Ltd have partnered with AllUser Industries srl to bring Europe’s most advanced high security portals to the Australian and New Zealand markets. AllUser Industries started to…read more
The Jump Pad is a safe, flat inflatable made in a variety of sizes which can be used indoor or outdoor. From 3mx3m up to a whopping 9mx21m. Markets include Indoor and outdoor playgrounds, schools,…read more
HQH Fitness is an international company that specialises in improving the health, fitness and wellness of people everywhere. We are the South Pacific distributors for Total Gym/GRAVITY Education and…read more
As of the 1st July 2018, Enta Australasia Pty Ltd/Best Union has been rebranded as VIVATICKET Pty Ltd. Click here to view the VIVATICKET Pty Ltd listing. 19th July 2018 - ENTA…read more
As of 2018, TicketServ operates as SeatGeek Asia Pacific Pty Limited, part of international ticketing platform SeatGeek. Click here to contact SeatGeek Asia Pacific via their entry in…read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!