“What a fascinating idea!” was what I thought when for the first time I saw an open-air gym in Bangalore. The fact that it was only two buildings away from my home was even more delightful. A piece of land, in between buildings, that was left unused was meticulously utilized for this purpose. Quite a good number of work-out equipment were installed on a cemented platform, fenced on all the sides with a small gate. Though the equipment did not have digital displays, they seemed to be sturdy and in good working condition, designed for all ages, from children to old-age people.
For a few reasons I’ve listed below, I feel open-air gyms are better than traditional gyms:
- It’s open to the public. There are no constraints of age and fitness to use the facilities.
- It’s free of cost. It’s like you take a walk to a public park and work-out for a while to have a refreshing time.
- There’s no membership or subscription. That means one isn’t forced to be regular which is a kind of stress to traditional gym users. It’s more oriented towards people who prefer leisure work-outs.
- Surrounded by trees, one gets to breathe in fresh air while working-out, in place of the confined spaces of the gyms where AC filters the breathing air.
I had imagined that a lot of our neighbourhood residents, especially older people who don’t opt for traditional gyms, are going to have a ball of time to keep fit. However, after almost a year of its construction, I am disappointed now to have seen it deserted all the while.
Are people lazy for work-outs?
Or does it feel odd and embarrassing to work-out in public?
Or being free of cost makes it valueless?
I am clueless!
I personally feel, a culture of such free and airy work-outs must be encouraged. A lot of Indian women of the older generation, specifically, have been confined to home and kitchen for several decades. The coming-up of parks around the city have given them the much-wanted leisure space where they gather in groups for yoga and light exercises. A step further, the bringing of open-air gyms is appreciable for it can give them an experience of active fitness. Perhaps, the younger generation carries the responsibility to demonstrate them the value of such facilities.
Have you used or seen an open-air gym? What are your thoughts about it? Please share in the comments below.