A bit of a rant warning!
During my many years working as a personal trainer in Manchester, I have worked out in many of the citys parks and outdoor spaces (also a load in Stockport an Cheshire).
Many of the parks I have conducted personal training sessions in have been at a very high standard, but unfortunately a few have been very poor. Covered with broken glass, litter and dog dirt. Unfirtunately I have found some siringes and various forms of bio hazard over this period of time too.
I think that we forget how important outdoor space is to the community it is a place to socialise, relax and exercise. As the spaces we live in are getting smaller and more cramped, the impitance of these green spaces will become more and more important to us. These spaces can offer a range of great benefits not just to persona trining clients but to a wide range of people. These include relaxation, a place to socialise, to reflect, and to exercise.
As a community I feel it is vital that we take a bit more ownership of these areas and most importantly use them. If we ensure that these places get great use, we take pride in our space and keep them clean, tidy and great places to be. I am sure that we will see the overall standads sky rocket.
Please do not get me wrong I have found many parks and open spaces that are great places to be, especially in Manchester, many of the local parks are getting Grren Flags indicating ther quality. I have decided to publish a top ten list of the very best parks and outdoor spaces to train in across Greater Manchester. Look out for that comming in the next few weeks.
In terms of improving the communities levels of health and Wellbeing these spaces play a vital role. I have seen a steady increase in the number of people who are using the parks for health based activities. They have for a long time been used for football, but we now see grandmothers out walking, mums and dads on a jog, kids playing in play areas, even the odd personal trainer or two!
Sorry if you find this rant a bit off topic but I just feel that we should all look after the open spaces that we have and protect them form misuse!