The open space gym

SHARE   |   Sunday, 18 January 2015   |   By Ontametse Sugar
Some Block 7 residents in Gaborone at the open gym facility Some Block 7 residents in Gaborone at the open gym facility

A lot of town folks live a sedentary lifestyle where people use public transport or drive to work, eat and sleep. This leads to many health challenges. 

This has given rise to business people opening up a lot of fitness gyms as people seek to tone their bodies or lose excess weight. 

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Some people have resorted to jogging, and doing many outdoor activities as they need not pay anything. 

Local Leatile Sithole came up with an idea of an outdoor gym in collaboration with the Ministry of Youth Sport and Culture (MYSC), National Development Bank (NDB) and Symphony Health. Unlike gyms that are paid for, this one is free of charge. The place is just by the busy Western Bypass, in Block 7.  Sithole said that said that though it is a pilot project, their partners Symphony Health and NDB are eager to see to it that the fitness phenomenon spread to other parts of the city.

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"This is a demonstration part, and our partners have really shown so much interest in expanding this. We will learn a few things from this project," he said. 

Sithole said that there will be further developments and also a guard put in place in order to control kids, because they have realised that many kids want to play there with the equipment. The training equipment used is for mature people. He revealed that from this observation they realised that a playground needs to be constructed so that all age-groups are catered for. 

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He said that they have a street workout section, where users can perform their pull-ups, sit-ups among others, which are termed calisthenics. They also have machines for cardiovascular training. 

"You can be able to exercise your back, chest, abs, legs, and the entire place offers the whole body workout,” he said. 

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On how it is going to be managed since it is in a public space and for everyone, Sithole pleaded with Batswana to understand that those are public facilities, and as such should give each other chance to use the machines. 

He said that the place have so far fascinated many and some trainers have already volunteered to conduct free classes at the park, with aerobics classes already in place.

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He said that they have strategically put the facility by Western by-pass because they know that is a busy road, and it is the same road that people do physical activities like jogging by, which then makes the facility very convenient for all those that will be along that route training. The positioning of the facility is also convenient for those that are coming from most places like Block 8, Phase 2, Block 3, Mogoditshane and Block 6, more so that most public transport passes there from different routes. 

He said that their aim is to also have wellness programs every quarter. Mercy Bafenyi who uses the new fitness place said that though she stays in Block 8, she always takes walks along the Western Bypass. These days she stops by the facility to do a few training exercises before she goes back home.

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" I have been so lazy to go to the gyms, and this place will definitely solve all my problems. We have been coming here with my friends and it is quite fascinating to have something like this," she said. She added that now they know that they have everything that they need to be fit without having to pay for the services. 



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