Backyard Gym: Staying Healthy at Home
While most homeowners view their backyard as a place where they can quietly sit and relax, plant some flowers and bushes and possibly make a playground for their children and grandchildren, the more proactive ones have realized that it can also be an excellent outdoor gym.
If you’re lucky enough to be able to spare a room and convert it into a gym, you may not need an outdoor one. However, if you really need each of the rooms in your home, you might start thinking outside the box, i.e., your house. The benefits of spending time and exercising in fresh air by far exceed the investment and effort put into turning a part of your backyard into an outdoor gym. So, let’s take a look at what you need to do to create your own personal gym and how you can profit from it.
One of the most common excuses people make for not exercising is the fact that it’s time-consuming to travel to and from the nearest gym and that they just can’t afford to waste that much time. Sometimes this excuse is indeed valid, but more often than not, it’s just something that makes us not feel guilty about not working out.
This doesn’t mean that we should entirely forgo hiking, skiing or cycling since all those activities provide some benefits that can’t be enjoyed in our backyard. If we can exercise in the privacy of our home on those occasions when we’re short of time, it’s clear that an outdoor gym is a great solution.
Covered or not?
When making a decision whether to cover your space for exercising or not, you need to take several things into account. First of all, the climate you live in. If you live in an area where days tend to be extremely hot or rainy, a covered space is a logical solution. On the other hand, if the weather conditions are mild, you might save yourself the costs of installing a shelter.
Next, you need to think about the gear you want in your gym. If it needs better protection from the elements, that’s what you have to provide, choosing an adequate shade structure. Uncovered areas are great for yoga or Pilates since you can quickly fold and stow away the equipment when you don’t need it, provided you don’t feel uncomfortable about working out in front of your neighbors.
What can you install?
One of the useful things you can do, provided you have enough space, is making a basketball, volleyball or tennis court. This will allow you to get regular exercise alone or with friends. You need to make sure you choose the appropriate ground cover that is not slippery and apply particular line marking paint, which will last longer because it’s resistant to rain and snow. Alternatively, you might go for paving stones, a rubber surface or an artificial lawn, depending on the kind of activities you’re planning to do.
There is equipment primarily designed to be used outdoors, such as pull-up bars, balance beams or climbing stones, which provide great fun for both children and adults, but there are still a lot of items that need protection from the elements. That’s why it might be a good idea to invest in portable things, which you can store away when you don’t need them. Some of those items are a bit more expensive but will allow you the freedom to install them wherever and whenever you want.
As you can see, there are quite a few things to consider when creating an outdoor gym, but the benefits far outweigh the trouble, which makes the investment worthwhile. You should also not forget that if your children or grandchildren see you being active and exercising, they’ll be much more likely to lead productive and healthy lives themselves, which is one of the most valuable lessons you can teach them.