Silverknowes beach gym has best views in Scotland

A selection of the newly- established alfresco gym kit at Silverknowes. Picture: Greg Macvean
A selection of the newly- established alfresco gym kit at Silverknowes. Picture: Greg Macvean
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IT’S Edinburgh’s equivalent to Venice Beach... a seafront gym boasting some of the best views in the city.

Muscle-bound bodybuilders like those iron-pumpers straining on the LA coastline can work up a sweat on the Silverknowes waterfront after an alfresco gym was installed next to the rolling seas of the Forth.

Unlike its indoor rivals, the mini-gym costs nothing to use... except maybe a few pounds.

Fitted as a multi-purpose work-out centre, the equipment includes a cross trainer, chest press, recumbent bike and rowing machine.

Costing £12,000, all of the strength training apparatus employs resistance performance, a safer alternative to heavy weight-based exercise.

It was installed on Monday amid “overwhelming demand” from the local community.

Personal trainer John Owen 31, who runs Life Wellness Fitness, hailed the gym an “innovative concept”.

He said: “This could become a haven for gym-bunnies but I suspect you will find running groups, fitness boot camps and casual exercises really making the most out of this. 
It offers a real variety of exercises that test most muscle groups but with breathtaking views of the ocean – not something you would find at inner city gyms that are often crowded out with members.

“I can’t think of anything better than working out with a clean, fresh breeze in your lungs.”

Councillor Lesley Hinds, the city’s Environment Convener, said the installation of previous mini-gyms around the Capital, including a flagship unit at Hailes Quarry Park, had been welcomed.

It is understood the Silverknowes waterfront is the first coastal location in Edinburgh to install an outdoor gym.

She said: “The local community were very keen to have outdoor gym facilities installed along the Cramond promenade. This is a great way to make fitness facilities more easily available to people living in and visiting the area. It will also benefit the numerous athletics groups who use the promenade, and I’d say there’s probably no other gym equipment in the city with such a good view.”

Ward Councillor Norman Work said: “The fact that it is free will help to attract a lot of people and may get some people who have never used a gym before to have a shot. It might encourage people like me that need it and might be one of these things to inspire people.”

MUSCLING IN ON THE ACTION

IT may be 5000 miles away from Silverknowes, but the concept of alfresco gyms first came to prominence 80 years ago on the shores of Los Angeles when the name Muscle Beach was coined.

Exercise equipment was installed on Venice Beach, immediately south of Santa Monica pier, where gymnastic and acrobatic performances were regularly held on the city-owned apparatus. A platform and weight lifting bars were later added to the beach which became renowned worldwide and repeatedly features in Hollywood films.

Seemingly inspired by its Californian cousin, the set-up on Silverknowes waterfront is thought to be the first on Edinburgh’s coastline.