Playground Workouts - Tips For Exercising In The
that time of year when many exercise enthusiasts head to the great
outdoors. After spending the winter cooped up in a gym, or basement,
it can be refreshing to feel the sun on your face and the wind in
your hair. It's also a great way to get back in touch with nature
and feel like you're reconnecting with the world. Numerous articles
and studies have outlined the physiological benefits to outdoor
exercise and recreation.
Unfortunately, many people still feel confined to the indoors
when it comes time for a kick butt strength workout. This is really
a shame because strength training outdoors can be a very refreshing
experience and can breathe new life into a stale lifting routine.
But what are you going to do? It's not like you're going to take
an entire power cage or weight machine with you to the beach.
The good news is that there are many outdoor gyms that are ready
and waiting for you. They have loads of equipment and most of them
are open 24 hours a day. Best of all they are also free of charge.
You don't even need to fill out any paper work. You simply just
show up and rock out.
Strangely enough, most folks never take advantage of these free
outdoor gyms. This is largely because they usually go by the name
of "playgrounds" and are considered by many as something
that's built just for little kids. Yes it's true. Playground workouts
are one of the best kept secrets within the world of health and
fitness. Below are just a few of the unique benefits of playground
Pet and kid friendly. The playground is a gym with a built-in
childcare and pet sitting service. What better place to take the
kids and the dog than a playground?
Free and open 24/7. Nothing better than having a gym that's
free and open whenever you want it. Best of all, because playground
training isn't popular, there are no crowds to battle and you won't
have to wait for equipment.
Lots of convenient locations. When folks first get into
playground training they figure there might be 1 or 2 playgrounds
in their town. However, once they start looking for playgrounds,
they are amazed at how many there are in the area. I personally
pass by 5 on my way home from work and I only have a 6 mile commute.
Limited by your imagination. Playgrounds naturally inspire
a sense of play and creativity. This ability to let loose and be
creative is a highly underrated quality within our fitness culture
where we are told to do everything by the book.
Functional and effective exercise. Playground workouts are
free, fun and convenient but that's all worthless if the quality
of your workout isn't there. The good news is that playgrounds can
offer the world's best workouts. The exercises are naturally functional
and safe as well as real butt kickers.
few distractions. The trouble with working out at home is that
there can be so many different distractions. The typical gym is
generally a much more focused environment, but even there you have
TVs, magazines and idle chit chat. Playgrounds are exercise focus
havens. They are literally removed from most people and distractions.
The only thing to do there is be active and workout. So leave your
smart phone in the car and experience laser like focus with every
move you make.
Playground Workout Tips!
You don't need to know or have a lot to get started. You can
literally just go to a playground and start playing around to get
started. However, you can maximize your playground workouts with
the following tips!
Bring water and dress appropriately. Treat your playground
workouts just like any other outdoor recreation. Be sure to dress
in lightweight and comfortable clothing and wear sunglasses and
a hat when it's hot and sunny. Also don't forget your sun screen!
It's also a good idea to bring some water as you'll probably dehydrate
faster when exercising outdoors. A hydration pack is a fantastic
accessory to use for playground workouts.
Bring gloves. Keep in mind that the playground isn't a pristine
and clean environment. There is always the chance for sharp stones
or glass on the ground as well as rust and flaking paint on the
equipment. For this reason, it's a good idea to invest in some cheap
work gloves to protect your hands.
Look for playgrounds with a lot of metal. Some playgrounds
are more suitable for workouts than others. Chances are you won't
be using elements that are more geared towards children. A good
rule of thumb is to look for playgrounds with a lot of metal elements.
The more metal bars there are, the more you can do to work your
Add some cheap and portable tools. A playground by itself
is a great place to workout, but that doesn't mean you can't throw
in some extra toys to make the experience more fun. Here are a few
- Interval timer. A simple timer can add motivation and
structure to any workout and it works very well out on the playground
where there are no clocks.
- Hand weights. While body weight exercise is the meat
and potatoes of playground training, a simple adjustable dumbbell
or kettlebells can add some more variety. You can also use them
to add weight to some of your body weight exercises.
- Sandbag. The sandbag is a particularly well suited tool
for playground work, not just because it's great to add weight
to all body weight exercise, but because it can travel well in
your car without rolling around.
- Suspension straps. The playground already offers more
exercise variations that you can shake a stick at. However, if
you're looking for a bit more, then adding a simple set of gymnastics
rings or suspension straps can give you even more variety and
Bring a towel. Sometimes the bars and ground may be wet
or dirty. Keeping a towel to wipe down these areas can make your
workout safer and more comfortable.
Become a student of calisthenics and ground based weight training.
Like all forms of training, your potential for success is only limited
by your own knowledge and skills. Regularly invest some time in
some basic body weight books or programs as well as information
about how to use basic free weights. The more you learn and develop
your skills, the more you'll discover just how much further you
So start checking out your local parks and school yards. By this
time next week you just may have found yourself a new outdoor gym
and you will be wondering why you didn't start working out there