The number-one question people ask when they hear about StayFIT equipment is, “Is it like an outdoor jungle gym?” Most have never seen this type of fitness equipment, and the closest they can compare it to would be the familiar outdoor jungle gym made for young children. Let me answer the question with a “Yes” and a “No.”
First, StayFIT fitness systems are similar to outdoor jungle gym equipment in that they are fun to use, designed primarily for physical activity, and are usually installed outdoors. Other than that, StayFIT equipment is different in so many ways. Let’s compare the two.
Outdoor jungle gym vs. StayFIT outdoor fitness equipment
The jungle gym is general any type of apparatus designed for children to climb, swing, hang, and exercise in an outdoor play-environment. Traditionally, a jungle gym was made up of a series of connected bars. They have been commonly called “monkey bars” because they encourage the type of play that is similar to a typical monkey’s behavior. The main purpose of a jungle gym is play and, in-so-doing, provide light exercise for children.
StayFIT equipment, on the other hand, is specifically designed for adults (ages 13 and up.) It may include one or many individual fitness stations that are used to strengthen upper-body, core muscles, back and legs. Although a person may be inclined to swing like a monkey on the overhead ladder or parallel bars, the main purpose of each station is fitness training. The stations can also be used for stretching exercises or to improve balance and agility. There are no free-weights to attach or adjust – it simply requires the use of a person’s own bodyweight as resistance.
These two also differ slightly in that the components of a jungle gym are generally permanent; whereas, some of the StayFIT fitness stations can be manipulated to varying heights or altered to meet different strength capabilities. There are a wide range of StayFIT system standard models, or your equipment can be customized based on individual preferences.
Jungle gym equipment is made from a variety of products (wood, metal pipe, plastic, rope) that are not always maintenance-free. StayFIT is made of powder-coated pipe and weather-resistant plastic benches that hold up to the elements. There are a couple fitness stations that also include a rope, and another that uses a medicine ball, but all the equipment is weather-friendly and needs very little care, if any.
Which is better?
When looking for park equipment, we advise purchasing both a children’s gym, such as those made by Pacific Outdoor Products, AND a StayFIT fitness system. Why? One reason is because we all need fitness so why not make it fun? Since parks and housing developments cater to both children and adults (and usually both at the same time), it’s best to provide exercise/play equipment that both can enjoy. Even a family with young children and a large enough yard could benefit from both structures. Situated side-by-side, a parent can exercise while keeping an eye on their child’s play.
Outdoor exercise, whether derived from “play” or an intentional work-out, is good for all ages. Pacific Outdoor Products has spent over 30 years perfecting the jungle gym (referred to as Poly, Timber, or Steel Playsystems) and StayFIT fitness equipment. We love these products and those who have installed them love them too. Both types of equipment have their benefits for each age-group.
So let the fitness begin! – The monkey can swing on the jungle gym while the adults have their own kind of fun.
*Note: it is recommended that parents monitor their child’s use of all StayFIT equipment. The age specifications are a general rule based on height requirement and physical readiness. Other safety precautions are generally posted on each fitness system.