TROY, N.Y. — A grand opening was held for the MVP Health Care Fitness Courts at Knickerbacker Park on Tuesday. The free, open-air wellness center came about from a partnership between MVP Health Care and National Fitness Campaign to activate public spaces and encourage a healthy lifestyle.
The facility includes 30 pieces of equipment, enabling users of all skill levels to leverage their body weight at different angles and resistance levels to increase mobility and muscular strength. There are seven different zones for various workouts including, core, squat, push, lunge, pull, agility, and bend. Each element can be used for hundreds of exercise variations, providing opportunities for those at all levels of fitness. Additionally, users can download the free Fitness Court app (https://nationalfitnesscampaign.com/app) which functions as a coach-in-your-pocket and transforms the outdoor gym into a digitally supported wellness ecosystem.
Troy Mayor Patrick Madden noted that there’s truly no excuse for not being able to stay in shape with the new accessible outdoor amenities in place.
“The City of Troy is thrilled to officially open our new Fitness Courts in Knickerbacker Park and Prospect Park this summer,” Madden said.
“These sites not only provide access to free, state-of-the-art fitness equipment in our community but also supplements our planned investments to improve public parks throughout the city. Thank you to MVP Health Care and the National Fitness Campaign for their support and partnership on this important community fitness project,” Madden added.
Stacey Barss, Leader of Field Marketing, MVP Health Care, remarked on the importance of having these accessible fitness courts in the city.
“The fitness core project across New York state has been one of passion and one dedicated to our commitment to accessible and equitable access to state-of-the-art fitness equipment regardless of your age, your economic status where you are in your fitness journey. This fitness court is really made for anybody and everyone at all levels,” Barss said.
Sarah James, Owner, and Founder of Balance Beast, will be holding free weekly classes at the site as well. The classes will be held on Thursdays, from 5:15 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Aug. 11, Aug. 18, Aug. 25, Sept. 1, and Sept. 8.
James expressed her enthusiasm for working up a sweat with the community this summer.
“I am a health coach, I’m a personal trainer and I’m a yoga instructor and to me, I think it’s so important the value of preventative health. I’m excited to be able to be here in open air in a facility like this that is open and accessible to everyone,” James said.
James noted that she’s looking forward to helping people achieve their goals across the fitness spectrum.
“I just try to make working out accessible to all so that people feel good when they’re working out,” James explained.
“I think a lot of times people are intimidated and when you come here you may not know what do I do or how do I use the machines so you’ll be able to have appropriate guidance that you feel safe and comfortable using the machines and each week the workouts will change so it’s a fun way to switch it up and be outside with the community and be outside in nature,” James added.
During the grand opening, some of the MVP employees on hand gave their impressions of the facility and the modified sweat session instructed by James.
“Modifications were given to me and so I appreciated that,” Maria Migliori said regarding the exercises.
Stacie Hebert echoed those sentiments.
“The fact that there are modifications, it’s really truly accessible for all fitness levels,” Hebert said.
“Anybody can come on down and participate with Sarah and she’ll make sure that they’re comfortable while they’re doing the exercise,” Hebert added.
Andrea Lane was appreciative of the variety of equipment that most people may not have room for at home.
“It’s fun to have access to rings and bars and the more unusual equipment that you’re not going to have in your house, change it up, work different muscle groups,” Lane noted.
The MVP Health Care Fitness Courts in Knickerbocker Park and Prospect Park are the first of four Fitness Courts to be built in Troy. The other two Fitness Courts, located in 112th Street Park and Beman Park, are scheduled for installation later this year.