Alastair Majury on Laighhills Missed Opportunity

Example of Outdoor Fitness Equipment: The treadmill at the outdoor gym off Culver Parade, Sandown, Isle of Wight.

The Laighhills park in Dunblane has recently experienced an upgrade to the play facilities, however this has only involved in children’s play equipment. This is considered to be a missed opportunity by local Conservative Councillor Alastair Majury and other local residents who feel that whilst work was going on in the park, outdoor fitness equipment could have also been installed. Councillor Alastair Majury has raised this matter with Stirling Council officers who have confirmed that they will raise this at the next Laighhills Master Plan Steering Group meeting.

The benefits of outdoor exercise and activity are now well documented, with many studies showing that outdoor exercise can help to improve mental and physical health, while exercise programmes have been shown to be as effective as antidepressants in treating mild to moderate depression. Regular exercise is key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but cost and accessibility can be barriers to gym use

Parks with outdoor fitness equipment fitted are a classic example of the “nudge” thinking that has been popular with both the UK and USA governments. The main idea behind nudge theory is that humans are innately lazy and are more inclined to take the default choice. The “nudge” is something that is intended to gently guide us into the right direction — whether that’s for our own good or to improve society. “Nudging never involves making anyone do anything they do not want to do nor does it involve telling people what to do,” says Richard Thaler, who co-wrote Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth and Happiness.

The idea of an outdoor gym is to place it in people’s way. They are often installed next to kids’ playgrounds, thus encouraging parents to use the fitness equipment while their children play. Even for those without children, placing them in parks and other open spaces that people cut across on the way to the shops or work is the essence of the “nudge”. Putting them in the way has the potential to create regular users.

Local Conservative Councillor Alastair Majury said:

“It is disappointing that whilst the significant disruption was occurring to the Laighhills park the opportunity wasn’t taken to install outdoor fitness equipment at the same time.The Laighhills park has been allocated a budget of £20,000 for 2018/19 and I would like outdoor fitness equipment to be considered as part of this expenditure. It would have brought a new dimension to outdoor activity in Dunblane.”

Alastair Majury resides locally in the historic Scottish city of Dunblane, and is a Senior Regulatory Business Analyst working across the country. Alastair Majury is also a volunteer officer at the local Boys’ Brigade company, a charity which focuses on enriching the lives of children and young people, and building a stronger community. Alastair Majury also serves on the local council (Stirling Council) as Councillor Alastair Majury where he represents the ward of Dunblane and Bridge of Allan, topping the poll.

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I am a Chartered Member of CISI, which is the UK’s leading securities and investment professional body. Alastair Majury resides locally in Dunblane.

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Alastair Majury

Alastair Majury

I am a Chartered Member of CISI, which is the UK’s leading securities and investment professional body. Alastair Majury resides locally in Dunblane.

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