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Specialist Outdoor Gym Provider for Primary Schools

A question and answer session that highlights the main considerations for schools when embarking upon designing and installation of outdoor gym equipment

Matt, Project Leader, Fresh Air Fitness

31st March 2021

At Fresh Air Fitness, we have been working with primary schools since 2011 and have become the leading outdoor gym provider for primary schools in the UK.

We design, manufacture and install outdoor gym equipment specifically sized for primary school children and offer over 15 different pieces of equipment in our children’s range, including some that are purpose built for wheelchair users.

Our research has shown that not only do primary school children feel happier after they have exercised on the outdoor gym, but they also find it easier to concentrate in class and 96% of primary school aged children that we surveyed told us 'having an outdoor gym made their school a better place to be'.

Today we spoke with Matt, one of our Project Leaders at Fresh Air Fitness, on what he feels are main considerations when schools embark upon designing and installing outdoor gym equipment.  


How does a school fund a Fresh Air Fitness outdoor gym?

An outdoor gym meets the PE and Sport premium criteria perfectly because it provides schools with an additional and sustainable improvement to the quality of their physical education programme, physical activity and sport offering. 

School’s have also funded their gyms thanks to activites run by their PTA and by other local and national funding opportunities that are often available. We can give further information to schools on any of these.


How big is the outdoor gym equipment?

Our children’s outdoor fitness equipment is just that, designed specifically for primary school aged children and so is built ‘child-sized’ for Key Stages 1 and 2. 

You should always check when buying outdoor gym equipment that it is correctly sized for younger children. 

It is not safe for primary school aged children to use equipment which is sized and designed for adult use. 

What are the best pieces of outdoor gym equipment for Primary School age children?

We find one of the most popular pieces of fitness equipment in primary schools’ is the Cardio Combi, a combination of our 2 most popular pieces of children’s outdoor gym equipment in one product that allows 4 children to exercise at once! It is an incredibly social piece of equipment, and, while having lots of fun, children also develop strength, flexibility, control and balance.

Schools tell us that their pupils have enormous amounts of fun on our equipment. The Elliptical Cross Trainer is always popular as it gets the heart rate up and is good for coordination and balance. I would probably also say the Children’s Arm and Pedal Bike. This gets the arms and legs going at once and we always see big smiles on faces with this one. 

We offer a range of set packages, to make choosing your school’s outdoor gym equipment easy. Alternatively, you can cherry pick which pieces of equipment you like best. Whatever you prefer, one of the Fresh Air Fitness team can provide all the information and advice you need to make the informed decision that is right for your school.


Is an outdoor gym safe to use during Coronavirus?

After your school's standard Covid-19 risk assessment has been carried out, your outdoor gym equipment will be ready to give school 'bubbles' a wonderful opportunity to exercise outside in the sunlight and open air. 

Our award-winning outdoor gym equipment enriches a PE programme and enables your PE teachers to create low-risk, Covid-secure, outdoor lesson plans.

Between classes, equipment can be quickly wiped and made ready for the next bubble.  


How long does it take to install, and can you do it during term time?

Installation takes between 1-4 days depending on the number of pieces of equipment. For example, a 4-piece gym can be installed in 1 day, into grass with grass mats.

We can install during term time, half term or even the summer holidays. 

We offer a friendly and professional socially distanced, Covid-enhanced installation process and all of our installation team will wear masks and gloves where appropriate.


Can you help with preparing the area ahead of installation?

We have helped many primary schools by preparing the area ahead of installation.

In one recent installation we cleared a large area of shrubs and old paving slabs and replaced it with a beautiful mulch pour surface. The results were incredible. It completely transformed an otherwise unusable area to a brand-new outdoor exercise area full of outdoor gym equipment.


How much does an outdoor gym for Primary Schools cost?

Our outdoor gym equipment starts from as little as £573. An outdoor gym package can start from as little as £5,000. Our Primary Package, for example, includes 4 pieces of equipment for up to 8 users from our children's range:  A Rider, T'ai Chi Spinners, Air Skier and Arm & Pedal Bike + a Free Children's Seated Leg Press and the cost is including delivery and installation!

Or you might be interested in our Bumper Package which includes 6 pieces of equipment from our Children's range, allowing 15 pupils to exercise at once!

All equipment comes with a 25-year warranty, a maintenance pack, post-purchase operational advice and parts service. 


Why do you think Fresh Air Fitness gyms are so popular with primary schools in the UK?

Enjoyment is the key to keeping children active and our outdoor gyms feel more like fun and less like exercise. 

Schools have told us children queue to use the outdoor fitness equipment at lunchtimes and breaktimes and they have seen a massive decrease in sedentary behaviour. 

We have carried out extensive research amongst primary schools where both pupils and teachers agreed that even the least active children were engaged, sports clubs and activities and holiday clubs were enriched, and physical activity became embedded into the school day.


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