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Campus Recreation opens new outdoor fitness courts – The Daily Illini



This afternoon, Campus Recreation unveiled an outdoor Fitness Court Studio, located at the corner of Gregory and Oak. The grand opening featured a ribbon-cutting ceremony and demonstrations with fitness ambassadors and guest speakers. 

The fitness courts, the first of its kind at an institution of higher education, include solar-powered tables, an area for workout classes and equipment for calisthenics and bodyweight movements. 

The fitness courts were made possible by a grant from the National Fitness Campaign and Blue Cross Blue Shield, said Associate Director of Assessment and Student Wellness for Campus Recreation Alanna Harris.

According to the Campus Recreations website, the areas were created with “people aged 14 and over and with all abilities in mind (and) the workouts are adaptable for all fitness levels, allowing participants to move at their own pace.”

“The fitness court affords people the opportunity to do resistance training outside  … there’s lots of benefits to resistance exercise but also to being active in the outdoors,” Harris said. 

If students are unsure about what exercises to do, the National Fitness Campaign offers an app that demonstrates exercises and workouts, said Harris. 

So far, the feedback from the Campus Recreation fitness team and students on the marketing team have been extremely positive, Harris added. 

“I was so excited when the students were like, ‘This is so cool, I haven’t seen anything like this.’ And they started playing, which is exciting,” Harris said. “Today’s the first day that will be officially open, so we will see access to the masses here today.”

Mallika Chowdhary, recent graduate of the University, said she regularly goes to the ARC and likes the concept of having an outdoor fitness area, which she also saw in Miami. 

“I saw that in Miami, people working out just beside the beach and it’s really nice during summers,” Chowdhary said. “The best part is doing all the exercises with bodyweight, so I feel it’s going be interesting with the app coming in and everything.”

Chowdhary also said that she intends to use the space, especially during periods of nice weather. 

“I would definitely be out in the sun … I will surely come here,” Chowdhary said. 


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