FitLot is a New Orleans-based, national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping communities find the resources they need to plan, build, and activate outdoor fitness parks. Founded in 2013, FitLot’s vision is for every American to have access to a cost-free public exercise space within walking distance of their homes.
Americans suffer from more lifestyle-related, preventable illnesses than any other country in the developed world.
Unfortunately, the communities suffering the most often have the least resources to improve health outcomes and create fitness opportunities.
FitLot exists to help bridge that gap.
A Community Centric Response to the Pandemic
COVID-19 has created social isolation, unemployment, and limited access to fitness facilities while putting a strain on physical and mental health. Communities throughout the country are being forced to forge a new normal while finding fresh solutions to long-term problems.
Outdoor Fitness Parks are a Solution
Each FitLot is a community space for people to get active, connect with neighbors, and proactively care for their health. The FitLot model is an innovative response to the challenges of lifestyle-related health issues, ever-growing public health disparities, and inequitable access to quality fitness equipment and instruction.
FitLot’s Impact To Date
Updated November 2022
TOTAL FITLOT OUTDOOR FITNESS PARKS
FUNDED, DONATED & CONSTRUCTED
RAISED TO SUPPORT THE CREATION
AND ACTIVATION OF PUBLIC OUTDOOR FITNESS PARKS
NO-COST COMMUNITY FITLOT CLASSES
NO-COST COMMUNITY FITLOT CLASS PARTICIPANTS
LOCAL FITNESS PROFESSIONALS
TRAINED AS FITLOT NEIGHBORHOOD COACHES
COMMUNITY ORGANIZERS SUPPORTED
WITH FITLOT’S PARK PLANNING GUIDE
OF RECYCLED TIRE RUBBER
KEPT OUT OF LANDFILLS
OF PUBLIC OUTDOOR FITNESS PARK
FitLot Has Organized the Donation, Construction and Activation of Outdoor Fitness Parks in all 50 States the USVI, PR and DC.
Click below to find your closest FitLot or to learn more about a particular project.
Praise for “The FitLot Method”
12-week training program
“My mobility has improved more than 50% since I started. About a month ago I’d have to get in a grocery store cart to do my shopping. The progress I’m making is life changing.”
Our Plan for a Twin Cities Network of Outdoor Fitness Parks
FitLot is raising the support needed to plan, build, and program a network of outdoor fitness parks that will create equitable access to outdoor fitness spaces and instruction for more Minnesotans living in the Twin Cities.
As our planning and organizing work continues the map below will feature at least one potentially ideal city owned green space for a FitLot in each Council District.
While this is one possible framework of a network of fitness parks, the final site selection work will be collaborative and community-driven.
Explore the Network Map
On the map below, click the icon in the upper left corner to view the list of potential FitLot park locations.
Click on a blue marker to view details of the park, including approximate number of residents served within a 10-minute walk according to the Trust For Public Land’s Park Serve Data.
The Twin Cities are national examples for parks and recreation management, park accessibility, walkability and bike-ability. The public health and quality of life for residents is among the highest in the nation but not for everyone.
Levels of physical activity vary among the population along the lines of race, and income in the Twin Cities.
Creating a built environment that provides no cost access to outdoor fitness equipment and programs is a step in fostering an even stronger culture of health and physical activity for residents of the Twin Cities.
BY THE NUMBERS
Residents living in the Minneapolis – Saint Paul Metro Area
Percent of residents living within a 10-minute walk of a park.
Number of playgrounds in St. Paul
3rd & 8th
Number of parks in Minneapolis
Only 59% of those with high school education are physically active as compared to 87% of those with bachelor’s degrees.
To learn more about the health of the Greater Minneapolis – St. Paul Metro Area please view the resources below:
- American College of Sports Medicine’s American Fitness Index Ranking for Minneapolis and Saint Paul.
What is a FitLot?
Here are the equipment details.
The FitLot offers a purposeful combination of equipment elements that provides a fully functional community fitness space for the widest range of ages and abilities.
Each FitLot is similar in size to a playground – is shaded and safety-surfaced, and contains both static and moveable fitness equipment for strength, cardio, balance, and flexibility training. The equipment is made with powder coated steel and made to last outdoors with minimal to no maintenance needed.
Learn how to use your FitLot
The Welcome Sign features a library of movements you can do with FitKit resistance bands.
The fitness equipment of the park is integrated directly into the shade structure, creating a continuous circuit to follow.
Scan the QR Codes for 30 second instructional videos.
Each piece of equipment has an instructional sign with QR Code. Scan the QR code to visit our Library of Movements and watch a 30 second instructional video on how to use that piece of equipment.
Adjustable resistance dials allow users to increase or decrease the difficulty.
The Elliptical, Stair Stepper, Chest Press and Hand Cycle have a resistance dial. Turn the dial right to turn up the resistance, turn the dial to the left to turn down the resistance.
10,000 lbs of recycled tire rubber forms a fun & safe surface to exercise on.
1,400 SQFT of 3” poured in place rubber surfacing meets ASTM safety standards and creates a fun and safe surface to exercise on. Each FitLot repurposes 10,000 lbs of recycled tire rubber, keeping that material out of landfills.
32 attachment sites for FitKit Resistance Bands.
These resistance bands can be used at ankle, waist and shoulder heights so that park users can add dozens of additional exercise options to their workouts. Buy the FitKit here.
Moveable Elements replicate the benefits of indoor fitness equipment.
Moveable Strength and Cardio Training Elements replicate the benefits of several pieces of commonly found indoor fitness equipment and makes them available for outdoor use.
Activating Each Park
Creating opportunities for community members to learn how to use their FitLot is critical to our mission. We strive to see every FitLot activated with free community fitness programs.
The FitLot Method Circuit Training Program leverages the park as a whole and includes an activation platform featuring instructional exercise videos, circuit training planning guides, and training programs for local fitness professionals to become FitLot Neighborhood Coaches and run no cost classes for the community.
FitLot works with a team of certified installers who manage construction and installation and also assist with long term maintenance. Each park takes about 3 weeks to build.
The GNO Network of FitLots could be built in a matter of months, or the parks could be strategically rolled out over a longer period of time as a one or two-year impact initiative.
Want more details?
The Title Sponsor of the FitLot Network will be making a statement that they are truly dedicated to the long term health of the community they serve. People will interact with these public spaces multiple times a week to improve their health and quality of life for many years to come.
Logo Recognition and Custom Colors
The welcome sign, safety surfacing, and shade canopy all provide opportunities for sponsor recognition and logo placements.
In addition, park equipment can feature a custom color palette to match the branding of the sponsor.
Over the last two years, our Community Build Days, Ribbon Cuttings, and ongoing activation of the parks have all been well covered by news media outlets throughout the country.
In an 18-month period, the AARP FitLot Initiative was picked up by 98 different media outlets across America with a potential reach of over 65 million people. Along with print and online news outlets, almost half of these earned media hits were via local broadcast television news.
We’ve also had broad social media engagement by Mayors and other elected officials, parks and recreation department pages, FitLot coaches and users all across the country.
Our development goal for the Twin Cities FitLot Network is $2,236,968 to support the construction and programming of 9 FitLot Fitness Parks
Letters of Support
As we continue garnering support from community partners and elected leaders in the Minneapolis – Saint Paul Metro Area, we look forward to discussing this initiative with you.
Andy Rodriguez – Director, City of Saint Paul Parks and Recreation Department
Join our team of FitLot Network Partners
For Questions or Inquiries Please Contact:
Founder & Executive Director of FitLot, Inc.
4035 Washington Avenue
New Orleans, Louisiana 70125
Adam@fitlot.org | (504)264-1568