Tag Archives: Exercise

NATIONAL PARK RX DAY IS SUNDAY, APRIL 23

0603_SouthCountyRegional_1670.jpgEvery year, the U.S. National Park Service encourages people and park agencies throughout the country to celebrate National Park Rx Day. The day serves as a means to promote and encourage the unique partnership between parks, communities and healthcare providers to get people to enjoy their community’s parks and nature as a way of preventing diseases, creating healthier lifestyles, and improving qualities of Life.

The initiative to get doctors to prescribe time in the park to their patients is a growing trend – and PBC Parks has initiated our own ‘Park Prescription Program’ – check it out!

Creating a healthier, happier society– one walk in the park at a time

Rx-For-Parks-FRONT-B.jpgThe Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department is partnering with members of the healthcare community to promote physical activity and improve the health of patients and the public in Palm Beach County through a “park prescriptions” program that connects them to parks and other public lands to create a healthier, happier society.

Across the United States, parks, healthcare providers, public health agencies, and other entities have successfully facilitated physician-patient conversations about active living through “park prescriptions” programs, connecting individuals and families to free opportunities for physical activity close to their homes.

The goal is to have outdoor physical activity serve as “prescriptions” to prevent or treat health problems resulting from inactivity and poor diet. Park prescriptions increase the amount of time patients spend enjoying physical activity and provide physicians and other healthcare providers with a new set of tools to inspire them to improve their health.

Public parks and recreation agencies are an underutilized healthcare resource. They create healthy communities and play a fundamental role in enhancing the physical environments in which we live. Through facilities, outdoor settings, and services provided, they support good health for people of all abilities, ages, socio‐economic backgrounds, and ethnicities. Parks provide a connection to nature which studies demonstrate relieves stress levels, tightens interpersonal relationships, and improves mental health. They provide opportunities for patients to reduce obesity and incidence of chronic disease by providing opportunities to increase rigorous physical activity in a variety of forms. And, they foster overall wellness and healthful habits, such as becoming tobacco‐free and engaging in enrichment opportunities that add balance to life.

DSC_7325.JPGIn Palm Beach County, there are nearly 120 county-operated parks and natural areas, hundreds of municipal parks, two state parks, a national wildlife refuge, and a number of public lands operated by various entities (South Florida Water Management DistrictSolid Waste Authority, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers). Facilitating health and wellness opportunities is a core service of the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department. Countless miles of paved multi-use pedestrian pathways and fitness trails, many with exercise stations, can be found throughout the park system. The department has recently brought the indoor gym outdoors with the new John Prince Park Fitness Zone, a completely outdoor facility containing 17 pieces of resistance exercise equipment located underneath a large shade sail, accessible by people of all abilities and fitness levels. The Fitness Zone is free to use and available daily from sunrise to sunset.

Creating healthier residents is a day-by-day, collective effort that involves our dedicated healthcare providers. The next time you reach for your prescription pad, consider adding one more item—an outdoor physical activity in a local park or public land.

Getting started

Please contact Christopher Korbelak at (561) 966-6649 or email pbcparks@pbcgov.org if you or someone you know may be interested in partnering with the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department to promote physical activity and improve the health of patients and the general public in Palm Beach County through a “park prescriptions” program that connects your patients with public lands to engage in outdoor physical activity to create a healthier, happier society.

Leisure Times also available for your office or facility.

 

Destination Recreation: John Prince Park Fitness Zone

Welcome to the second episode of Destination Recreation! We take you through different Palm Beach County parks and facilities in each episode – giving you a unique peek at what you can experience at our more than 80 locations throughout the County.

On this episode, we take you to the Fitness Zone inside John Prince Park in Lake Worth, a shaded area that offers 17 pieces of resistance exercise equipment that uses your own body weight to target and train specific muscle groups. The Fitness Zone is a popular, free amenity for people ages 14 and up, and it’s accessible by people of all abilities and fitness levels!

Don’t miss an episode – follow pbcParks on WordPress or subscribe to our YouTube channel to see each episode of Destination Recreation, which is released monthly.

We make the quality of life for Palm Beach County residents and visitors better by providing diverse, safe and affordable recreation services, welcoming parks, and enriching social and cultural experiences. We achieve this by promoting wellness, fostering environmental stewardship, contributing economic value, and by improving our community every day for this and future generations.

For more opportunities for healthy, happy living, visit pbcParks.com.

Get your feet wet at #pbcParks!

 

Coconut_Cove_Waterpark_1

Palm Beach County is a popular location for kids and families who want to ‘get their feet wet’ by splashing in and around the water! The weather is perfect year-round for a day at the beach, or a dip in the pool. The Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department offers plenty of opportunities for people of all ages to be active in the water.

Pools & Aquatic Centers

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Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation operates six pools and aquatic centers throughout the county. Each pool offers activities and classes like water aerobics, adult lap and open swim time. Be sure to check with each facility for specific times, dates and facility hours.

  1. Aqua Crest Pool in Delray Beach is heated in the winter for year-round enjoyment. It features a 50-meter pool with a diving well and children’s play pool. Various swim teams practice at Aqua Crest, including the Palm Beach Masters, East Coast Aquatic Club Swim Team, and the Coralytes Synchronized Swim Team.
  1. Gleneagles Country Club Aquatic Center is located at the CMAA Therapeutic Recreation Complex in John Prince Park, Lake Worth. It runs from April through September. Programs and activities available at Gleneagles include adaptive swim lessons, aqua motion, family and lap swim, scuba instruction and more.
  1. Lake Lytal Family Aquatic Center also operates during the winter months, in West Palm Beach. The Palm Beach Masters and Lake Lytal Lightning Swim Teams practice at this facility, and it also offers Water Walking.
  1. North County Aquatic Complex is located in Jupiter and is open year-round, as it offers a heated pool. It also features a 50-meter pool and a children’s wading pool, as well as water aerobics classes. The Jupiter Dragons, Palm Beach Masters and the Jupiter Dive Club, a competitive spring board diving team, practice at North County
    Aquatic Complex.
  1. Pioneer Park Aquatic Center: Belle Glade’s Pioneer Park Aquatic Center is open from May to September, and features a 25 yard pool with tipping water buckets for the kids and water slides.
  1. Santaluces Aquatic Complex is located in Lantana, is open from May to September. A 25-meter pool, diving boards, and a children’s wading pool are located at the facility.
Waterparks

Calypso_Bay_Waterpark_1Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation operates two waterparks, both of which close for the Winter season. Each waterpark offers an affordable opportunity to get the kids outside and into the water. Check out what you can enjoy at these waterparks which open in March for Spring Break!

  1. Calypso Bay Waterpark is in Royal Palm Beach inside Seminole Palms Park. This waterpark also offers a nearly 900-foot river ride, lily pad walk, four-story high water slides, water playground, as well as a lap pool with diving boards and more.
  1. Coconut Cove Waterpark is located inside Burt Aaronson South County Regional Park in Boca Raton. The waterpark features an 897-foot fiver ride, lily pad walk, two water slides, a children’s water playground pool, and more.
Beaches

Beaches are the number one reason people visit Palm beach County – and Palm Beach County operates 16 beach parks from Tequesta to Boca Raton. Palm Beach County’s South Florida location means any day can be the perfect beach day – for free! Kids and families can spend time basking in the sun (with adequate sun protection), building sand castles, Beach_2playing catch on the beach, or swimming in the ocean.

Palm Beach County’s Ocean Rescue lifeguards protect swimmers at fourteen oceanfront and inlet parks to ensure beachgoer safety. For an accessible beach experience, beach wheelchairs are available at several parks.

For helpful beach safety information, watch this video.

Splash parks

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Splashparks are a great, free way for kids to cool off in the water! Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation operates three brightly colored, interactive splash parks for kids to run and jump in.

The splashparks are located inside John Prince Park in Lake Worth, Westgate Park & Recreation Center in West Palm Beach, and Glades Pioneer Park in Belle Glade. The splashparks in Glades Pioneer Park and Westgate Park are open seasonally; however the John Prince Park location is open year-round!

All three of the splashparks offer interactive features for kids, including rotating spray cannons, ground-level water jets, and animals like frogs and whales. Shade sails are provided at splashpark locations for sun protection. Kids will have a blast splashing around in these water playgrounds, while soaking their friends!

Splashparks are free to use, however for groups of ten or more, weekday reservations are required at Westgate and John Prince Park and a nominal fee must be paid. Please contact each park or facility for more information on reserving the splashpark for a group of ten or more.

Swimming lessons

Swim_Lessons_2For parents and kids living in Palm Beach County, it’s a necessary skill to know how to swim, or, know the basics of water survival. That’s why Palm Beach County pools and aquatic facilities offer swim lessons for people of all ages.

For specific schedules, rates and class information please check with the facility.

For Palm Beach County water-related activities, visit pbcsplash.com.

Visit pbcparks.com for information on all Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation facilities.

Accomplish Your Fitness Goals with #pbcParks

The number one New Year’s Resolution is to get healthy & fit – #pbcParks is here to help!

There are so many free & low-cost ways to stay active in our parks, from doing strength training exercises in our free Fitness Zone, to cardio like biking and swimming, there are endless options to help you accomplish your fitness goals in our more than 80 parks and recreation facilities throughout Palm Beach County.

Join Bibi and #pbcParks in this short video as she shows you some of the ways you can get a great workout in our parks.

We make the quality of life for Palm Beach County residents and visitors better by providing diverse, safe and affordable recreation services, welcoming parks, and enriching social and cultural experiences. We achieve this by promoting wellness, fostering environmental stewardship, contributing economic value, and by improving our community every day for this and future generations.

For more opportunities for healthy, happy living, visit pbcParks.com.

Accomplish your New Year’s resolutions with #pbcParks!

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It’s time to start making lists filled with the goals we want to accomplish in 2016. Some popular aspirations include traveling or reading more often, spending more time with family and friends, or learning new hobbies. But of course, the most popular New Year’s resolutions are health-related.

According to Nielsen, the top two New Year’s resolutions in 2015 were to “stay fit and healthy” and “lose weight.” If the cost of a gym membership is keeping you at a standstill, the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department has good news for you – you can accomplish these goals without a gym membership! The key to living a healthier lifestyle in 2016 can be found in a park near your home or job.

The most recent statistics from 2007 by the Florida Department of Health suggest that about 68% of Palm Beach County residents are inactive at work, and only about 36% of residents meet moderate physical activity recommendations.

It’s a core service of the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department to facilitate health and wellness opportunities to help our park patrons achieve their health and fitness goals in the coming year!

Walking, running & jogging

If you’re just starting your physical fitness journey, consider talking with your health care provider first and begin by adding walking to your daily routine. Various health organizations indicate there are countless 80380240benefits of walking. Doctors with Mayo Clinic, a medical non-profit and worldwide leader in medical care, research and education, indicate that combined with fewer caloric intake, 30 minutes of brisk walking every day can burn about 150 calories daily. Adding to that, the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) reports that walking as little as 30 minutes a day can have more than just physical benefits – including reduced risk for chronic diseases like heart disease and osteoporosis, reduced risk for depression and other mental illnesses, as well as contributing to a reduction in air pollution.

view from towerTake advantage of the many walking paths and nature trails throughout Palm Beach County’s park system. The multiuse paths may be used for walking, jogging, running, skating or bicycling. Or, take it easy with a walk on any of our five nature trails, like the one at Daggerwing Nature Center, you may come across animals like ospreys, butterflies or wood storks. In addition to the physical benefits that come with exercising outdoors, various organizations like the University of Washington report that “green spaces” like these help control mental fatigue, stress and a variety of other mental issues.

Tip: A healthy brain is key to accomplishing all of the other goals on that New Year’s resolutions list!

Have a bike you’d like to pull out in 2016? We provide bicycle paths and off-road bicycle trails, as well as bicycle rentals, at some of our park locations.

Strength training & stretching

Staff at the Mayo Clinic report that strength training can help reduce body fat, increase lean muscle mass and burn calories more efficiently – a proven method for losing weight, looking and feeling better!

It’s never too late to start strength training! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention outlines the benefits of strength training in elderly individuals, reporting the reduction of signs and symptoms of arthritis, diabetes, obesity and others chronic diseases in those who strength-train regularly.00043.MTS.Still001

If you’re looking to add strength training to your exercise plan in 2016, take advantage of the recently-installed Fitness Zone® at John Prince Park. It contains 17 pieces of resistance exercise equipment under the shade – and it’s free to use every day, sunrise-sunset. At other parks, like Loxahatchee Groves and Burt Aaronson South County Regional, you can go through exercise courses and stations to stretch, balance, kick, jump and more. To learn more about the health benefits of stretching from the Mayo Clinic, click here.

Water activities

Pennsylvania’s Bucknell University offers a helpful guide to the benefits of water exercise, like swimming. Among the many benefits of exercising in the water are increased muscular flexibility, circulation and an improvement to the physique.

78032109The Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department offers six aquatic centers where visitors can workout in the water for a low cost. Kids and adults can enjoy water aerobics, lap swimming, water walking and other water-related exercises.

South Florida’s weather is perfect for water activities! In 2016, make it part of your plan to discover Palm Beach County’s beautiful water bodies. Thousands of park-goers already take advantage of boating, canoeing and kayaking opportunities at inland county parks like Riverbend and Okeeheelee, as well as access to the Intracoastal Waterway and ocean from saltwater boat ramps located in parks like Phil Foster and Bert Winters. Canoe and kayak rentals are also available at select locations.

Tip: Canoeing and kayaking allows you to have a relaxing day out, as well as improve your aerobic fitness, strength and flexibility.

Kids’ fitness

Adults aren’t the only ones who may want to improve their physical health in the coming year. Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation offers multiple options to get kids up and moving – including playgrounds, recreation centers and splashparks.

So what are you waiting for? Get started today! Visit www.pbcparks.com and find a county park near you.