The New York Times knows for a fact that you loathe working out, that you'd do anything to avoid it. Harvard Medical School professors whom they interviewed agreed: “Let’s face it, most of us dread going to the gym,” Dr. David Ludwig said. But what if there was a way to combine exercising with the carefree spontaneity of jungle gyms and forest green monkey bars? NYC is certainly hoping so: the city is planning on bringing as many as two dozen "adult playgrounds" to the five borough in the next 18 months.
The first adult playground—which is essentially an outdoor gym—has already opened in Macombs Dam Park in the Bronx. There are, unfortunately, no slides or swings, but the idea is that they look like traditional children’s play spaces (many adult playgrounds are built by the same manufacturers) and that they "recall the joy of childhood play while tightening up flabby abs, thighs and triceps."
Parks officials say the Bronx location has been very popular already, and locals such as unemployed mother of five Colette Prosper gave an idea why: “It’s a free membership, and I like what they have to offer,” she said. “I’m getting older, so I’m trying to get everything in shape.” The next location to be installed this fall is slated to be at John Jay Park on the Upper East Side; that one will have some upgrades, such as exercise mats, chess tables, and a sign that says "Adults Only."
The idea seems like a knock-out—and yet, there's a lot of convincing going on in the article, like adults really need to be sold on staying fit. And like children, they need their medicine masked with some sugar, as Ludwig put it: “The point is to make physical activity fun, easy and accessible, so it’s the normal thing to do.” But hey, at least you probably won't be arrested for eating a doughnut in any of these playgrounds—although you'll likely get some nasty stares.