Fitness Court

In honor of their 10th anniversary, Novant Health Kernersville Medical Center (KMC) recently partnered with the Kernersville Parks & Recreation Department (KPRD) to install a new community health and wellness Fitness Court at Civitan Park, located at 309 Nelson Street.
The new outdoor exercise space is designed to help improve access to free health and fitness equipment within the community.
Kirsten Royster, president and chief operating officer of Novant Health KMC, explained that installing the Fitness Court was a way to extend their 10th anniversary, as well as to give back to the community.
“We have been doing some volunteering things in the community, but this is something that is more permanent that we have been doing with the Kernersville Parks & Recreation Department,” she said, adding that they hosted a school supply drive for Kernersville schools in July, and they plan to host a food drive for Crisis Control Ministry. “The Fitness Court is an outdoor space that the community will be able to use to exercise, with various exercises and instructions. There is an app that you can download that provides coaching and instructions for each station.”
The National Fitness Campaign (NFC) Fitness Court, a proprietary product, features seven stations for exercises ranging from lunges to squats to agility training. The organization says with the court’s equipment, users can get a full workout in seven minutes. The new fitness court will offer community members, of all athletic levels, a unique and safe place to exercise in an outdoor and open-air wellness center environment.
“Our mission as an organization is to improve health,” Royster said. “We look for ways to do that in clinical health, but we also look at ways for people to look at health in all ways, not just in clinical care that we provide people; and, exercise is a great way to improve anyone’s health.”
She continued.
“By improving access to fitness opportunities within our community, we’re not only helping to revitalize a park, but we’re also making an investment in the overall health of the next generation.”
Royster said having parks gives people the opportunity to exercise outdoors for free.
Royster explained that Novant first approached Ernie Pages, the director of KPRD, to see if they could partner with them on the installation.
“One of our community members said he might be doing something that aligned with what we wanted to do with our 10th anniversary,” she said.
While they weren’t able to have a large community event to showcase the installation, Novant Health KMC, along with the KPRD and the Town of Kernersville, came together on Thursday, August 26 to install the Fitness Court. The Fitness Court is now open to the community for use.
While Novant Health served as a sponsor for the Fitness Court, Royster noted that NFC also provided some funding. You can learn more about the National Fitness Campaign by visiting www.nationalfitnesscampaign.com.
“We certainly know how important prevention is to keeping our community healthy, helping the community thrive and bringing clinical care to a place which this area deserves,” Royster said.
Pages said when they did their initial needs assessment for Civitan Park, one item was high on the list and kept coming back up.
“The one thing that kept coming back up that was high in the rankings was some sort of workout station or workout zone,” he said.
Pages said he was excited to be approached by Novant Health KMC for the Fitness Court.
“It’s really exciting because it’s turning into something much bigger than when it started in Kernersville,” he said. “They are trying to incorporate this same thing in all Novant areas. It’s a big step forward, not only for us, but it also gives us the opportunity to improve the overall health of our community.”
Pages said Novant does a community health assessment every four years, and the most recent test showed that diabetes and obesity were the top two highest health risks for Kernersville residents.
“Creating this Fitness Court helps provide the community a free outlet to work out,” he said. “We will end up doing some fitness classes out there and Novant will too. And we’ll end up doing an ambassador program for anyone willing to work with us, to teach people how to use the equipment.”
Kernersville Mayor Dawn Morgan shared her appreciation for Novant Health’s longstanding commitment to improving health and wellness in the Kernersville community.
“We are excited about their support of the new Fitness Court at Civitan Park,” she said. “The Fitness Court will provide a fantastic opportunity for members of our community to access free outdoor exercise facilities, for fitness and well-being. Civitan Park has always been a well-loved park in our community, and the Fitness Court is a great addition to the park. On behalf of the Town of Kernersville, I would like to thank Novant Health for helping make the installation of the Fitness Court possible, and for their continued support of health and wellness in our community.” 

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