A new fitness game aims to get people healthy in safe, socially distant ways and have fun in Toronto’s parks.
Parkdale FitPlay, sponsored by the Parkdale Village BIA, launched on January 27th and will run throughout February. It’s a way to stay active and connect with local health and fitness leaders from Parkdale’s various Black / BIPOC communities, said Debbie King, a fitness director and athlete who came up with the idea for the event.
“It was born out of the idea of how we can keep people moving at a time when we know it’s darker, colder and harder to achieve that motivation,” King told blogTO.
Lockdown restrictions prevent people from going to the places they would normally go, like a community gym or fitness center.
The concept is simple. King developed an alphabet key and there is an exercise next to each letter.
“The idea is that you use your name or a short word as a prompt and then do each of the exercises associated with those letters.”
The word can create a small circuit. The alphabet key is printed on posters in the neighborhood on the Facebook and Instagram pages. There is a list of seven possible parks people can go to for their fitness break.
“We encourage people to go outside and [get] fresh air in our designated parks, “said King.
Going outside and changing scenery is motivating, but if people prefer they can do the workout at home.
There are online videos of the five Parkdale fitness leaders that people can access for advice and ideas about fitness.
“All fitness leaders are black because there has always been this fundamental goal of getting more of our black community leaders to the top,” said King.
King also wanted to connect with the Black Community in Parkdale.
“We also know that black communities and families are disproportionately affected and that health, well-being and well-being are currently critical,” said King.
It can help people to have a face to identify with for motivation.
“I am happy to make this connection.”
Parkdale FitPlay is free and can be used anytime, anywhere.
So far, over 200 people have joined the Instagram page, and the program has also been distributed across schools and shared by Parkdale politicians.