Minister for Sport Michael Ring joined Deputy Mayor Matt Lyons and members of the local community for the official opening of Sligo Borough Council’s new ‘Outdoor Fitness Trail’ at Mitchell Curley Park. The Minister was accompanied by Deputy Mayor Councillor Matt Lyons, Deputy Tony McLoughlin, Senator Michael Comiskey, Members of Sligo Borough Council, Director of Services Paula Gallagher and staff of the Borough Council’s Parks Section.
The 2011 Sports Capital allocation of €81,000 from the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport enabled Sligo Borough Council’s Parks Department to provide this state of the art Fitness Trail at Mitchell Curley Park. The Outdoor Fitness Trail links and complements a range of facilities already on site and provides an ideal environment for residents of Sligo to keep fit and active. The project encourages an active healthy lifestyle and supports the focus on ‘more people, more active, more often’, a strategic objective of Sligo Local Authorities and Sligo Sport and Recreation Partnership.
Mitchell Curley Park has undergone very significant development since 2000 with funding support from the Sports Capital programme. The Park has been progressively transformed and developed as a quality recreational facility and it is extensively used by the general public. The provision of this extensive outdoor gym and fitness trail using the existing developed surround walkways of the park has further enhanced the recreational areas of Mitchell Curley Park. The extensively used existing 1 km walking and jogging trail around the pitches is an ideal location for this fitness trail.
The Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Fitness Trail consists of scientifically designed exercise stations / activity points dispersed along the 1km outdoor trail. The trail also includes a number of additional destination fitness zones incorporating clusters of exercise equipment. The various units are suitable for use for different user groups or needs including users from 12 years of age upwards, older adults and people with disabilities. The fitness zones and activity points included within the design incorporate such items as cross trainer, dip bars, leg press, air walker, waist twister, sit up board, rowing machine, elliptical trainer, stand and sit rotator, flex wheel spinners, pull down challenger, parallel bars, balance beams, push up bars, upper body trainer, power bike, etc. Use of the fitness trail system will develop cardio vascular conditioning, muscle tone and flexibility resulting in the overall improvement and maintenance of user’s fitness levels. Each station is equipped with a detailed exercise instruction sign designed to accommodate all levels of fitness.
The Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Fitness Trail provides extensive outdoor gym facilities strategically integrated to allow safe and accessible use. All facilities are set in the scenic parkland location of Mitchell Curley Park featuring significant leisure attractions. Sligo’s Mitchell Curley Park fitness trail is freely available to all users for both active and passive recreational pursuits. Other funding contributors to this project were Sligo Borough Council, Sligo Sport & Recreation Partnership and Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Gym Group.
Since 2009 Sligo Borough Council Parks Department have been working in close co-operation with Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Gym Group (Kathryn McSweeney, Chairperson; Francis Fidgeon, Treasurer), to develop and promote an outdoor gym area in Mitchell Curley Park for the community. The Outdoor Gym group have been active in promoting the gym concept and organising fundraising events in an attempt to achieve funding. The hard work and foresight of the Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Gym Group ensured the project was ‘ready to go’ when the funding became available from the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport in 2011.
As well as contributing to the Capital funding of this scheme, Sligo Sport and Recreation Partnership (Deirdre Lavin, Sports Co-ordinator) are working closely with Sligo Borough Council to promote and develop the use of this new Outdoor Fitness Trail. The Sports Partnership in conjunction with the Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Gym will provide a series of free workshops using fully qualified instructors showing people how to use the equipment safely and correctly and helping adults of all abilities to get the most of the local outdoors for free. The first of such ‘Come & Try’ events is taking place today after this Official Opening!
The development of recreational facilities including 2 No. sand carpet grass playing pitches at Mitchell Curley Park have previously been supported by Sports Capital funding.
This project was delivered by Sligo Borough Council’s Park’s Department under the leadership of Micheal Condron, with support from Sligo Borough Council, Sligo Sport and Recreation Partnership and Mitchell Curley Park Outdoor Gym Group.
Mitchell Curley Park is an established recreational amenity Park serving particularly the population of the west of Sligo but due to the nature and quality of facilities on site the Park is extensively used by the general Sligo and environs population.
Facilities currently developed on site include:-
• A natural grass sand carpet playing pitch GAA pitch
• A natural grass sand carpet playing pitch soccer pitch
• A large children’s playground
• Climbing units and activity zone
• High quality ornamental display gardens
• 1 km off road walkways circuit around the pitches
• Car park and toilet facilities