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outdoor
fi tness
UNDER
THE
RADAR?
SHOULD OUTDOOR GYMS BE SUPERVISED?
LUKE TUCHSCHERER ASKS THE EXPERTS
The Great Outdoor Gym
Company’s equipment is compliant
with the same European safety
standard as children’s playgrounds
eople throughout the UK
P
will have pledged to get MATT DELANEY
more active as part of their managing director, the great outdoor gym company
New Year’s resolutions.
However, with the recession traditional ‘stack’ weight
only just beginning to lift, the cost of systems you often fi nd in
gym membership has the potential to W
e want our gyms
to increase
participation in indoor gyms, where users can
put many otherwise determined folk off. physical activity, especially easily lift far too much weight;
But what of the growing number of among under-represented on our equipment, the user
outdoor gyms that provide the public groups; we want to make cannot over-exert themselves
with free-to-use equipment? our gyms free at point of use, as well as they’re only ever pushing against a
Said to be as safe as the as highly accessible; and we want to percentage of their own bodyweight.
equipment in children’s make our gyms as safe as possible. Many of those who use our gyms
playgrounds, could this In terms of non-supervision, want to do so in their own time, fi tting
be the way to help people perhaps the most important element a workout into their busy lifestyles. It
stick to their fi tness goals? to consider is safety. We’ve designed would just not be practical to supervise
The catch for our equipment so each piece is fully the gyms 24/7, and if supervision
many people compliant with the European safety were compulsory, it might reduce the
seems to standard EN1176. This is the same number of people able to use them.
be the lack standard that’s applied to children’s I think it’s also fair to say that many
of guidance playgrounds. It effectively means that indoor gyms are unsupervised. There
offered – so all entrapment points, crush points, may well be someone on duty at the
should these gyms swinging pendulums and sharp edges front desk, but often inside the gym
be supervised? We have been removed. In addition to there’s little to no supervision.
ask the experts. this, we have very clear instructional We do, however, encourage local
signage on our equipment, with authorities to use the gyms and run
Stalker: Should easy-to-understand start and fi nish sessions with their own trainers. An
we encourage diagrams and instructional text. element of encouragement in some
non-exercisers We’ve also designed our equipment cases could be a good motivational
to jump on the so that it uses resistance created tool, but we think it should remain an
kit on their way by bodyweight, rather than the optional extra, not a requirement.
to the shops?
64 Read Health Club Management online march 2010 © cybertrek 2010
healthclubmanagement.co.uk/digital
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