Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Introducing Jimboomba Park Retro Exercise Trail from the 80’s

An exercise trail in Jimboomba Park demonstrates that public health has been in focus for quite a long time with the community capacity builders.

Previously in a few of my blog postings I have introduced the concept of Senior Park and LifeTrail for community sports and recreation enthusiasts. At the same time, I have been pondering what is it that seems to stop me from actively implementing my awareness that regular exercise is crucial to my wellbeing and actually take it up as part of my daily activities. Also, I have been investigating what kind of play/exercise areas we need to develop to enhance public health for all ages through our community care organisation.

I can say that I am seriously interested in my own and other people’s wellbeing. I can be relatively easily persuaded to group activities and anything energetic that would relate to my work as confirmed by my interest in travelling around and investigating what is available. Yet, somewhere there is a wide gap between this interest and actually doing it. I would like to help everyone, including myself to close this bridge. I feel that I now have to start from the nearest and easiest park available to me at

Jimboomba Park is situated right next to the Caddies Community Care Centre, where I work. I drive past it every day and sometimes I have taken part in some events, like The Vibe or other youth events organised by my own staff. I know there is a walking group organised by us that uses the park early mornings. Our Community Service Delivery Coordinator is doing everything she can to get people enthusiastic about healthy lifestyle, food and activities. There is a scooter and skateboard track there, which is often full of young enthusiasts. On a weekday I very seldom see any other people in the park or the playgrounds. So, I decided to go there on a Saturday instead.

The concreted retro trail is approximately 120m long. There is an exercise station at every 20 meters. I couldn’t really call them equipments in a modern sense, except maybe for the monkey bars. Rather, they are small items placed on soft surface to help those who complete the trail to do a particular exercise, like hopping over a log or walking a plank for balance. There is even a two train monorail that was a popular feature in the 90’s parks. Unlike modern outside exercise equipments these items are not designed to actively aid with the exercise itself. Rather they are there to provide a platform for a movement or action. However, similarly to modern trails, a good trainer or physiotherapist can do a lot in guiding people to do a right exercise with the help of a particular station to enhance and keep their physical abilities in good shape longer. The difference is that the new equipment and playgrounds are designed to enthusiastically help to attain results. It is a further developed concept from what is provided here that applies the modern efficiency approach to sports and recreation standards. The new playground equipment comes complete with the research results about how efficient they are in aiding the exerciser’s goals.

Yet, I had a very good half an hour walking down the trail and trying all the stations and so did the few families, I did encounter. I am quite convinced, though that with some deep analysis of what is needed and suitable for particularly set aims, we will be able to develop a suitable activity area for both young and old to have professionally guided activity groups that really enhance our physical wellbeing.

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