Outdoor obstacle courses have their origin in military training. However, in recent years, they have found their way to Australian public parks, school playgrounds and universities. Obstacle/Ninja Courses are one of the fastest-growing outdoor sports, attracting tweens, teenagers and adults to challenge one another whilst developing mental and physical strength.
KOMPAN outdoor obstacle gyms are designed in a way that challenges everyone at their own level. An obstacle course is not just a random collection of activities. The approach needs to be planned and considered to ensure that the physical variety of exercises offers the most benefit in attaining the desired result.
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Frequently asked questions about obstacle courses for adults
How long should I spend on obstacle course equipment?
This is very much up to you. It really depends on the number of features and fitness level, and you can always go around two, three, or four times. You can break away for a sprint or a short run and then return to the obstacles – it’s your choice. However, we recommend that, as with all training regimes, you set a reasonable target that can be adjusted to find the perfect level for development.
What's the minimum recommended amount of obstacle course equipment for a site?
You need to have five different activities to ensure you cover the basics. You'll require equipment to meet the challenges of balance, jumping, crawling, climbing and overhead exercises.
How many people can participate at the same time?
Regardless of its size, the obstacle course can accommodate numerous participants – you can stagger start times, and as long as you agree on which direction the challenge should be attempted, it should be a smooth operation.
Do you have to be in a group to use outdoor obstacle course equipment?
Of course, you can set your own individual challenge, but exercise is generally more enjoyable when it is shared with others.
What are the benefits of outdoor obstacle course equipment?
Strength: The varied nature of obstacle course equipment means that users should have received a well-rounded, full-body workout by the end of the activity. The compound movements required to tackle obstacles such as rope walls and jump pods provide a fantastic way to improve overall strength.
Endurance: Outdoor obstacle course equipment offers an excellent opportunity for users to improve their endurance levels. The various obstacles faced along an obstacle course require physical and mental stamina, making them incredibly demanding on the user. Varying climates can add an additional level of challenge - from cold, blustery winds to hot, sweaty sunshine. Designed to push users to their limits, obstacle courses can help people realise just how much they can endure.
Agility: One of the most exciting parts of an obstacle course is that participants rarely know what to expect. Obstacle course parts can vary greatly, from hurdles to overhead ladders, meaning that users need to think on their feet. This helps to improve both physical and mental agility. As agility increases, users should be able to overcome challenges more efficiently - both on and off the obstacle course.
Confidence: There has been extensive research into the impact of exercise on confidence, with studies documenting that physical activity links to higher self-esteem. Obstacle course equipment offers a fun exercise activity that encourages users to work their bodies and brains to overcome challenges, creating a sense of achievement. As users progress with their fitness, they should be able to complete obstacle courses faster and more efficiently, which can deliver a fantastic confidence boost.
Problem-Solving: One of the most interesting features of an obstacle course is that there may be more than one way to overcome each challenge. The ambiguity of certain obstacle course parts means that users are encouraged to think of creative solutions to progress, improving their problem-solving skills.
Team Building: Outdoor obstacle course equipment provides a fun and exciting opportunities for group exercise. A key feature of obstacle courses is that they offer a wide selection of challenges, meaning that while one user is jumping over hurdles, another may be shimmying over a balance beam. Depending on ability, users may require assistance from peers to overcome certain obstacle course parts. Completing an obstacle course challenge as a group can help encourage team building and community spirit between friends, colleagues, or even strangers. Obstacle courses can also promote healthy competition between peers - especially with the addition of an outdoor gym timer.
How to choose the right obstacle course parts for your setting
Who is it for?: Firstly, who is the equipment for? A fitness site designed for professional athletes is bound to feature different obstacle course parts to an active ageing site for the elderly. Plan your design around your users, considering their goals and how your obstacle course equipment can help them achieve them. Building an obstacle course for adults in their 20s who wish to improve overall strength? Select equipment that requires compound movements, such as vertical walls and hurdles. KOMPAN’s extensive range of outdoor fitness equipment enables you to easily craft a bespoke obstacle course that fits your users’ requirements.
Alternatively, if you are looking for a nature-inspired Ninja Warrior Course for your public park or schoolyard, check out KOMPAN's timber outdoor fitness equipment range.
Looking to install outdoor obstacle course equipment?
Installing outdoor obstacle course equipment is a great way to provide an engaging and challenging workout for your community. Obstacle courses can help users build physical and cognitive strength, improve endurance, and re-connect with the natural movements human bodies were once so used to doing.
If you want to learn more about our outdoor fitness offering - including outdoor gym equipment for seniors, cross training, outdoor calisthenics equipment, cardiovascular trianing equipment, street workout systems and outdoor weightlifting equipment - get in touch with your local KOMPAN team by sending an inquiry.
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