Regular exercise is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle, but not everyone has the means to work out in a gym or at home with personal equipment. While there are many ways to work out at home without weight machines and cardio equipment, there are also many advantages to using more than your body weight or free weights for your fitness. Fortunately, going to the local playground and using its equipment for exercise can be a suitable alternative to relying on a gym.
In this article, we’ll discuss some of the best ways to exercise at your local playground, whether you’re interested in increasing your stamina or overall muscle strength. Everyone deserves to prioritize their health through whatever exercise they see fit. The accessibility of neighborhood parks can help you meet your fitness goals without committing to a gym membership or breaking the bank on personal equipment.
Get in Some Cardio
Cardio is a crucial part of improving your overall health, as it works your heart, lungs, and lower body muscles. The open spaces of most playgrounds are perfect for a wide range of cardio-based activities, including jumping jacks, jumping rope, and taking a light jog. Many playgrounds also have some kind of track for those that want to focus on building their stamina with a walk or run. Even if your local playground doesn’t have a dedicated track, jogging around the perimeter of the area still gives you a chance to get your heart rate up.
If you’re more interested in targeting specific muscle groups and building up your overall strength, there are many ways to use playground equipment for bodyweight exercises. Swings can be used for assisted push-ups, squats, and various core exercises, allowing you to work every part of your body with just one piece of equipment. Monkey bars and low rails can also be used for pull-ups and bridge swings, respectively, giving you a chance to work your upper body and core using just your own weight.
There are also ways to work out without using exclusively playground equipment. Park benches can be used for a wide array of exercises, including tricep dips and bench jumps. This way, if any of the playground equipment you use for exercise is unavailable, you can at least find an empty bench and still work your desired muscles.
Use Fitness Playground Equipment
Although most standard playground equipment is sufficient for a variety of exercises, there are some playgrounds that offer equipment specifically designed for many standard workouts. This fitness playground equipment mimics many of the machines found in gyms, but instead of using weights and cables, they leverage your own body weight and movement for their operation.
Some machines work just like elliptical machines, while others resemble those used to work your upper body, providing the same movements as regular machines while putting less stress on the body. Due to this accessibility, fitness playground equipment has become very popular with seniors who still want to exercise while accommodating their specific limitations. Many continuing care retirement communities have begun to include this equipment on their properties in recent years.
Getting into the habit of exercising can be difficult on its own, especially when you don’t have access to standard equipment like what’s found in a gym. Playgrounds can be a great alternative to going to the gym, however, allowing you to still live a healthy lifestyle and become an advocate for your own well-being.