CSUN Parcourse Provides Community Access to Fitness Equipment
(NORTHRIDGE, Calif., Dec. 14th, 2011) ―
Northridge resident Omar Akhtari arrived at the “ExerCircuit” parcourse at California State University, Northridge right before noon as another woman was just finishing her workout.
CSUN students Kiyo Tsubakiyama (left) and Garen Dunn demonstrate a piece of equipment. Photo by Jenny Donaire.
Akhtari began his routine by working on his legs and then moved on to his arms. The 44-year-old self-employed man got a full-body workout in less than 20 minutes for what he called the “right price” of zero dollars a month.
“For many years, I went to LA Fitness and this is much better and more convenient. The equipment is better than other places that I have seen. It’s something new,” Akhtari said. “I love it and I am thankful that CSUN lets the neighborhood use this equipment. It’s beautiful and thanks to the people who pay attention and make this stuff for the neighborhood.”
Cal State Northridge’s Department of Kinesiology has created a new and exciting alternative way to incorporate a moderate to vigorous workout into the daily routine of local residents and CSUN faculty, staff and students—an “ExerCircuit” fitness parcourse on campus near the corner of Lindley Avenue and Plummer Street, just north of the Center of Achievement and Abbott and Linda Brown Western Center for Adaptive Aquatic Therapy. The parcourse officially opened last month.
“The primary purpose is to provide people of all abilities access to equipment designed to improve their health given regular participation,” said CSUN kinesiology professor Steven Loy. “We are here to help our community’s health and be a model for other university kinesiology departments, not only through outreach into the community but by helping our own.”
The parcourse consists of 15 pieces of equipment/stations positioned as a strategic circuit on the periphery of the course and an adjacent natural surface track. Loy recommended visitors take a brisk walk to the “Exercircuit” parcourse and work out at least three times a week for 20 to 30 minutes. He suggests 30 seconds at each station, combined with a 10-minute walk or jog around the track.
That level of commitment, he said, meets the minimum daily exercise requirement as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Loy also recommended parcourse users buddy up and take a friend because the circuit is designed for two people to exercise together. He said exercise is always easier with a friend.
Loy said the “ExerCircuit” parcourse was built, in part, to provide the campus and community with free access to fitness equipment when all other facilities are closed. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week to CSUN faculty, staff and students, the community. If
community groups want to have a demonstration during the academic year, they only have to contact Loy, who will provide them basic instruction and information at no charge.
“This is a gift of health to our entire community with no strings attached,” he said.
“The purpose is to facilitate fitness not only for the campus community, but for anyone who wants to use it,” said Jean O’Sullivan, communications specialist for the College of Health and Human Development.
The installation of the parcourse equipment was funded through donations from Kaiser Permanente, the Campus Quality Fee and Instructionally Related Activities funding. The equipment was donated by alumnus Shlomi Golan ’91 (Electrical Engineering), president of ShapesInShape, Inc.
For more information or questions regarding the use of the “ExerCircuit” parcourse, contact Steven Loy at firstname.lastname@example.org.