Poor maintenance of open-air gyms damages equipment

August 24, 2022 08:24 pm | Updated 08:24 pm IST - TIRUCHI

Damaged equipment in an open-air gym on Anna Nagar link road in Tiruchi.

Damaged equipment in an open-air gym on Anna Nagar link road in Tiruchi. | Photo Credit: M. Moorthy

Poor upkeep and lack of a proper maintenance mechanism of open-air gyms in the city have resulted in damage of many equipment.

It was with the view of encouraging morning walkers to have some basic exercises that the Tiruchi City Corporation introduced the open-air gym concept in 2018. The city’s first open-air gym was declared open on Allithurai Road in January 2018. It received good patronage among the people. Morning and evening walkers, including women, began to use the gym. The civic body subsequently set up its second open-air gym on the walking track along the Uyyakondan canal on Anna Nagar link road. It also became an instant hit. Several senior citizens, women and children, who frequent the walking track, and leisure seekers, utilised the facility well.

Similar open-air gyms were set up in different parts of the city. The park sites and the sites marked as playgrounds in the layouts, which were identified as vulnerable to encroachments, were used for setting up open-air gyms. The city has more than 50 such gyms and several of them have been used by the residents.

But except for one or two gyms, most of them have no caretakers and there is no proper mechanism to maintain the gyms as well, due to which the fitness equipment are getting damaged. In some cases, improper and excessive use has also caused damage to the equipment. At least four pieces of equipment were found damaged at the open gym at Anna Nagar link road. The regular users find it difficult to use the equipment that had gathered rust.

“The walking track attracts about 1,000 walkers a day. Nearly 10 % of them use the open air gym facility. Some of the arm and leg exercise equipment are not in usable conditions. It disappoints us,” said J.G.S. Sundararaj, a regular user.

Janardhanan of Bheema Nagar, another regular user, said that besides taking steps to repair the worn out or damaged equipment, the Corporation should put in place a mechanism to maintain the gyms properly.

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