By Mikael Krummel

Have you checked it out yet? Maybe you’ve glimpsed it while driving through Main Street in Springfield, its unusual profile standing two stories tall just south of Willamalane’s Keefer Sports Center. Maybe you’ve strolled through the site pondering personal possibilities. Or maybe you’ve already established it as a fixture for pursuing your active, physical lifestyle.

It’s called FitLot Fitness Park, and it’s adjacent to Willamalane’s community sports fields and main recreation building. The attractive structure, which opened for public use in September 2021, is the product of a partnership involving Willamalane, AARP Oregon, and FitLot Outdoor Fitness Parks.

It’s currently the only FitLot facility in Oregon, but one is planned for each state. All are being designed, constructed, and made available at no cost for local communities. It’s open 24 hours daily for access by users of all ages, abilities, and fitness levels. Impressive!

The site has colorful pipe structures and steel rails, molded seats, and standing and reclining platforms. There are simple instructional guidelines at each exercise station. And a variety of mechanical workout devices offer adjustable strength and resistance functions to users. The dozen exercise stations are embedded in a 3-inch-deep foundation made from particles from 10,000 pounds of recycled rubber tires. Main architectural posts do double duty supporting a geometric canopy that provides weather shielding.

Photo by Mikael Krummel

The FitLot site offers options for several dozen calisthenic and moveable equipment exercises. We’re talking both cardio and strength training. Work out your kinks on the elliptical and press units. There are stations for bicep and tricep curls, calf raises, pull-ups, and hand curls. Try the combined chest/back exerciser. Or the high row station. Or the crunch bench. Sit-ups, knee raises, spar pushes, squats.

“There’s so much easy access here,” says FitLot Executive Director Adam Mejerson. “Like, when the kids are playing soccer and parents are waiting, instead of sitting in their cars, they can come out and try the park or even join a free class. We want everybody to know this park is for them. No matter your age or ability level, there’s something out here that you can really benefit from.”