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Ralph Stout Park home to new Fitness Trail

By: Marlana Ward
Freelance Writer

Previously known as home to the primary walking track in Johnson County, Ralph Stout Park is now home to our community’s first “Fitness Trail.” With the addition of seven workout stations, the park promises to be an even greater asset to those in the area working toward healthier lifestyles.
A Fitness Trail utilizes a combination of walking paths and exercise equipment to allow for a more complete workout.  The selection of equipment installed at Ralph Stout Park makes possible a customizable workout depending on the fitness level and needs of those using it.  Equipment available includes:
Spring Balance Beam- Improve balance and coordination by navigating the three piece balance beams.  By being seated on springs, this balance equipment adds a degree of difficulty and need for muscle coordination.
Rower- Using one’s body weight for resistance, the rower machine requires the whole body to work.  Extra emphasis is on upper body as you work your back and biceps in a rowing motion.
Uneven Bars- These bars can be used for pull-ups and arm dips.  The varied heights mean those of advance fitness levels may train without touching the ground while beginners may use the ground for support.
Sit-Up Bench- Whether being used to better execute the traditional sit-up or reversing position to lift the lower body, this equipment provides a way to improve form and effectiveness.
Ski Walker- The cross-country skiing motion gives a great cardiovascular workout without the joint stress of walking or jogging.
Back Extension- This stationary piece of equipment provides toning for the lower erector spinae muscles, the hamstrings, and the gluteus muscles.
Leg Press- This station can accommodate two people.  The quadriceps, gluteals, and hips work together to lift the user away from the center post.
Each piece of equipment has instructions posted on it as well as suggested number of repetitions or amount of time needed to best utilize it.  When combined with the walking trail, a person can get a great and varied workout while enjoying the beauty of the park.
The funding of the fitness trail was made possible by a grant from the Tennessee ThreeStar Community Program.  This program seeks to improve the lives of those in qualifying counties by improving community assets.

To read the entire article, pick up a copy of this week’s Tomahawk.