Get fit al fresco at Loch country park

One of the outdoor gym stations at the Forfar Loch Country Park.
One of the outdoor gym stations at the Forfar Loch Country Park.

Visitors to the Forfar Loch Country Park have been given the opportunity to challenge themselves on new outdoor fitness equipment.

The colourful apparatus has been installed at three separate sites - at St Margaret’s Inch on the north side, at the west end of the loch and at a site overlooking Strathmore Cricket Club.

They have been strategically located in positions which are easily accessed from local offices, residential areas and sports clubs. Each ‘station’ includes ten units of equipment that will offer a full body work out.

Instruction boards talk the visitor through usage of the equipment which cost £68,409, funded by a sportscotland grant of £26,542 with the rest paid for by the council.

The total cost included all ground works, installation of equipment, the equipment, training for staff and access to a website for users.

The outdoor gym is seen as fitting into a category whereby existing users of the country park, exercise enthusiasts and those sports men and women whose clubs lie along the border of the park may well see this as an alternative resource to use in their leisure pursuits. In addition, it is envisaged that it may well encourage those who are not physically active to develop an interest in becoming active and do it more often.

The facility will be promoted and developed as an outdoor activity area that can be used effectively by schools, clubs and community groups for mixing walking with exercise routines/circuits.

The equipment has no moving parts thus reducing the occurrence of potential accidents and will need minimal maintenance. The purchase of the equipment also included access to web based programmes that provides participants with details of exercise programmes that they may wish to follow.

The provision of the outdoor gym will encourage a wider age group to mix walking with a bit more strenuous exercise; it will provide a facility for those who cannot afford to or want to use an indoor gym and it will encourage the use of parks and open spaces.

The Lochside Leisure Centre uses the stations – weather permitting - as an alternative exercise area for classes that take place in the centre.