Community News: Time to get fit in the fresh air in Royston!

Time to get fit in the fresh air in Royston!

New outdoor fitness equipment has been installed at Royston Leisure Centre – join an organised class to work out in the great outdoors with like-minded people or rock up whenever you fancy!

The outdoor gym – which has over 50 exercises and can be used by 30 people at any one time – was officially opened on Thursday (17 August) with a live demo of the equipment with some members of the leisure centre and local councillors.

It’s for use by anyone aged 13 or above from the local community much like other outdoor gyms in North Herts (listed below) and there are QR codes on the equipment which people can scan on their mobile phone for instructions including videos.

Royston Leisure Centre is also running ‘Outdoor Blast’ classes twice a week – every Monday 5.30-6pm and Friday 9.30-10am – which are free to both leisure centre members and non-members for the first six weeks – until 2 October. After this, classes will still be free for members and there will be a £2 charge for non-members.

To book please visit the SLL app or call 01763 255190. More classes are expected to be added to the timetable so keep an eye on the app, Royston Leisure Centre’s Facebook page or SLL website.

The project cost £50,000 and was funded by the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, part of the government’s Levelling Up agenda to enhance outcomes. The equipment was installed by Kompan.

Councillor Steve Jarvis, Executive Member for Environment and Leisure, said: “It’s great to see the outdoor fitness area finished at Royston Leisure Centre, which we were able to secure external funding for. The easy-to-use and adjustable equipment looks great, and it was fun to have a go. It really is for any ability, you just scan the QR code to see how to use each item, there are even videos to show you exactly what to do. It makes a change from the usual gym to be able to work out in the fresh air. I hope both members of the centre and local people in Royston make use of the equipment to get in or stay in shape, which will boost your mental health too.”

Paul Francis, General Manager at Royston Leisure Centre, added: “We are delighted that the outdoor fitness area, with easy-to-use equipment, is open for members and the local community. The Outdoor Blast classes running twice a week are fun and energetic, helping to improve cardio and muscular endurance with a full body workout.”

Royston Leisure Centre is located on Woodcock Road, Royston, and offers a wide range of activities for all ages and abilities. Facilities include a Technogym fitness suite, a 25-metre swimming pool, a four-court indoor sports hall, and a variety of workout classes. There is a range of memberships available to suit all needs.

Details of the outdoor fitness equipment:

Step up – one of the simplest yet highly versatile training tools as so many exercises can be done with it, from simple step ups to plyometric jumps (e.g. burpees). Incorporating upper and lower body movements will improve balance and agility, and the constant push up onto the step will increase leg strength. Regular sessions will provide both cardiovascular and muscular endurance.

Combi gym – seven workout stations in one! This station features an incline bench, parallel bars, push-up bar, decline press, Swedish ladder, human flagpole and pull up station. This allows training for multiple muscle groups including upper body and to create core stability.

Cross training combi – combining a suspension trainer and magnetic bells. Suspension training is very effective because it simultaneously increases strength, balance, flexibility and core stability, exercising all muscle groups no matter what the fitness level of the user. 49 exercises, the intensity of each can be determined by adjusting the body position to add more or less resistance. Magnetic bells are an innovative magnetic breaking system which allows the user to increase the resistance by increasing the speed of movement, and choose between a 9kg or 12kg weight. An accessible piece of equipment for both the trained and the untrained, the bells move freely up and down and can spin 360°, allowing the user to do exercises which are very similar to using a medicine ball or kettle bell.

Balance station – trains ankle strength and stability. Four different stations give variety and invites moderate social interaction. Two difficulty levels – one that is stable and limited in its range of motion and one that is livelier and more dynamic. More suitable for older adults or those recovering from an injury.

Vertical wall/net – the right-hand side of the wall has three steps to assist the feet and eight handles to help you get over the wall and the left-hand side is a flat wall of almost 2.40m height which is more advanced. The net can be used to scramble up or down. Play or train together to develop muscle strength and bone density.

Other outdoor gyms in North Herts:

  • Priory Memorial Gardens, Royston
  • Baldock Road Rec, Letchworth
  • The Grange Rec, Letchworth
  • Jackman’s Central, Letchworth
  • King George V Rec, Hitchin
  • St Johns Rec, Hitchin
  • Great Ashby District Park
Royston Leisure Centre – 29 Woodcock Rd, Royston SG8 7XT – 01763 255190 –  Facebook page or SLL website
Open Mon-Fri – 6am to 10pm Sat & Sun 7am – 6pm