MOM, DAD, THIS PLAYGROUND IS FOR YOU
An adult playground was installed in New York City at Macombs Dam Park in the Bronx.
It was not exactly a scene that one was used to encountering. It was, very aptly put, a classic father-son moment - only, this time, it was reversed. How? You may ask. Well, it happened like this, the 2-year old boy sat by patiently and quietly watched as his father played on the monkey bars, hanging upside down. Sounds funny right? Like, what crazy new world is this? Just hold on. At that same scene, a few feet away from the man, a white-haired man was engaged in an activity of his own. He happily skipped across the length of an S-shaped metal beam. We're not done yet. Another man at another section, arranged his six-foot frame on a metal rack meant for situps, while two others were engaged in chin-ups, hoisting themselves up on the bars.
Ignoring petty things such as the punishing diets, gym dates and also the doctors' warnings, one can see that the constant quest of man to live a longer, healthier and more active lifestyle has culminated in this: playgrounds whichever, rather than children, are meant for adults.
The city of New York is testing its first of such in a Macombs Dam Park, located in the Bronx. According to park officials, the city plans also, to bring as many as two dozen similar playgrounds to neighborhoods spanning the five boroughs in the next eighteen months.
The goal here is to attract people and tempt them to leave their couches and easy chairs and finally head outdoors, using the specially designed play equipment, which is in 'grown-up' shades such as forest Green and beige. These play equipment helps then recall the joys of childhood play, while simultaneously helping them tighten up flabby abs, triceps, and things as well.
It should be noted that while these playgrounds don't feature equipment like swings or slides - which means they are basically like outdoor gyms - and aside from having the look of the traditional kid's playground, they are also built, in some cases, by the manufacturers of children's playground.
The idea for this adult playground is borrowed from China as well as parts of Europe where outdoor fitness areas meant for adults are now as normal as high-fiber diets or when vitamin D supplements taken in preventive care, mostly for senior citizens.
Encouragingly, a steadily increasing number of both city and park officials, health experts as well as community leaders from all over the country have begun praising the health and also, social benefits of these adult playgrounds. According to them, these adult play areas, will make headway and achieve success, where treadmills and the likes, have failed in fighting against the steadily growing rates of obesity and similar illnesses, by tempting the grown-ups to come out for play dates.
Dr. David Ludwig, a Harvard Medical School Professor who is in charge of directing the Obesity Prevention Center located at Boston Children's Hospital, said: “Let’s face it, most of us dread going to the gym". Also according to the professor, “The point is to make physical activity fun, easy and accessible, so it’s the normal thing to do.”