urban gyms

Seven new urban outdoor gyms have opened in parks across Tower Hamlets, enabling local people to use to improve their fitness and get active without the need for expensive gym memberships.

The urban gyms were suggested by residents who took part in GP patient participation groups. The council’s sports, parks and public health teams have jointly commissioned them as ‘Our Parks’ using Section 106 funding¹.

The gyms are part of a social prescribing service that GPs, nurses and other healthcare professionals can refer patients to to offer them additional support to improve their health and wellbeing.

It is estimated that 20-30 per cent of the adult population in Tower Hamlets is clinically obese due to a lack of physical activity, limited access to green spaces, poverty and the widespread availability of cheap, unhealthy food.

Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs, joined residents, fitness instructors and parks staff on Monday 13 August at a fun day for the launch of the outdoor gym at Sir John McDougall Gardens on the Isle of Dogs.

Mr Biggs said: “Tower Hamlets has a problem with obesity and we recognise how important physical activity is for improved physical and mental health and wellbeing. Our new outdoor training facilities give residents an opportunity to exercise in the fresh air, improving their fitness levels and having fun at the same time.”

The Tower Hamlets urban gyms are located at the following locations:

  • Millwall Park, Manchester Road, E14,
  • Ropewalk Gardens, E1,
  • Shandy Park, Harford Street, E1,
  • Sir John McDougall Gardens, Westferry Road, E14,
  • Rounton Road Park, Rounton Road, E3,
  • Jolly's Green, Joshua Street, E14
  • Pollard Square, Pollard Row E2.

The gyms include parallel bars, cross trainers, smart energy hand bikes, benches and sprint tracks. And the council is running free weekly instructor-led exercise group workouts at each of the venues.

“Physical activity can boost self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy, and regular exercise can reduce your risk of major illnesses, such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and cancer by up to 50 per cent. I encourage local people to make use of these new free-to-access facilities, and reap the many benefits exercise can provide.” 

Who to contact

Urban gyms

Where to go

Name of venue
Tower hamlets park visit our website for a activites in your local park