Losing that winter coat and getting in shape for summer has never been easier with the installation of Palmerston North's first free outdoor gym at Takaro Park.
Fitness fanatics put the equipment to the test on the weekend and were pleased with the results.
Ajaay Hirawani, 22, and Amos Hadfield, 22, were at the park on Saturday, pulling themselves up on the bars with ease.
The duo, who head down to the park most weekends "to jam" on the playground and use the monkey bars to work their biceps and triceps, said they would be back most days to use it. "This is exactly what we wanted," Hirawani said. "I think I'll be here all night."
The project, funded by Palmerston North City Council, has eight pieces of exercise equipment.
The $40,000 project arose after submissions on the city council's draft Annual Plan two years ago calling for the placement of more outdoor gear to make it easier for adults to exercise without the expense of gym membership.
"Every park needs them - pullups and ab boards," Hadfield said.
Hirawani wants outdoor gyms all over the city, especially in The Square.
"Then that would really be city fitness, fitness in the city."
Takaro Park was selected because it was close to facilities, including a new toilet, a playground for children accompanying adults who were exercising, and there was good visibility from the road without being too exposed.
The gear was bought from Devine Fitness Equipment in Nelson.
Council external contracts and housing officer Lynne McMillan said staff had considered a range of options and locations before settling on Takaro Park.
She said some other locations considered were in neighbourhoods where more people already had access to gyms, and the means to get to them. She hoped lighting could be installed next winter so more people could use it in the evenings.
- Manawatu Standard
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