THERE’S no excuse to be a couch potato now an outdoor gym has opened in Leigh Park.
The gym, which cost more than £30,000 and can be used by anyone, is ready for action after being built at St Clare’s Park in Warren Park – and already people of all ages and fitness levels are working up a sweat.
More than 60 children from Warren Park Primary School were among the first to try the facility, led by fitness instructor Clare Miller.
Contemporary performers from Southsea-based dance group jAM jAR showed some alternative and creative ways of using the outdoor gym, especially the step-up blocks, running track and moon walk apparatus.
The scheme is a joint initiative between Havant Borough Council and Hampshire County Council to increase physical activity levels and support a healthier lifestyle.
The gym equipment includes two space walkers, two skiers, triple pull-ups, a pull down exerciser, leg press, chest press and a body twister.
There are also rectangular concrete structures which can be used as step–up boxes.
The Warren Park gym comes on the back of the success of the council-run outdoor gym at Eastoke, Hayling Island, where people are known to queue up to use the equipment.
Liz Fairhurst, a county councillor for Leigh Park, added: ‘The facility is well placed in Leigh Park giving local people the opportunity to use it whenever they want.
‘The health benefits of regular physical activity are key to a healthy lifestyle and wellbeing.’
The gym will be open 365 days a year and Cllr Fairhurst said it can fit into hectic lifestyles – and no gym subscription is needed.
She added: ‘Our commitments to work and family life do not allow us to fit exercise in at a set time.
‘This outdoor gym facility gives everyone the freedom to do exercise at a time to suit themselves.’
Havant Borough Council provided just under £9,000, taken from developer cash, while Hampshire Action Team – a fund run by county councillors – provided around £23,000 for the gym.