Community Play Day offers many fitness fixes

The Singapore Sports Hub's community Play Day, held yesterday, drew a total of 8,000 participants to a variety of group activities.
The Singapore Sports Hub's community Play Day, held yesterday, drew a total of 8,000 participants to a variety of group activities.ST PHOTO: MARCUS TAN

Linda Goh, who lives in Kembangan, has always found it a hassle to travel around Singapore to join zumba sessions held in gyms and studios.

But yesterday, the 52-year-old housewife got more than just her fitness fix.

At the Singapore Sports Hub's community Play Day, which drew a total of 8,000 participants, she tried different workouts for the first time, including dancing to the beat of Bollywood music in Bolly dance, kickboxing, and salsa at the OCBC Square.

She said: "Usually if I want to go for zumba (sessions), I have to travel all the way for an hour just for one to three hours of it. It takes more time for me to travel than to do the actual exercise.

"But today, I did so many kinds of workouts in one trip, all at one place. I felt my time was fully maximised and I am so satisfied."

The mother of three - two sons aged 21 and 15 and a 19-year-old daughter - is a fitness enthusiast. She exercises at the gym five times a week, doing cardio workouts like running on the treadmill for two hours.

Lately, she is also considering buying a fitness activity tracking device like the Fitbit.

She said: "I run quite often and I need something to (track) my heart rate. A handphone is a bit too big and it's too sensitive to touch."

Fitbit, an American manufacturer of activity monitoring devices, tied up with the Sports Hub's Experience Sports daily fitness sessions in January. The one-year partnership was officially announced yesterday before the start of the day's activities.

Launched when the Sports Hub opened its doors to the public in June 2014, the free daily programmes include pilates and kickboxing.

Said Fitbit's country manager Louis Lye, 50: "From a national standing, the Sports Hub is an iconic place for people to come and exercise and keep fit.

"Actually it doesn't quite matter if people buy Fitbit products. We see that the Sports Hub's programmes are the best vehicle for us to reach out to the community to make behavioural changes to their lives."

The new partnership was born out of a similar goal by both organisations to encourage more Singaporeans to participate in sports.

Sports Hub chief executive officer Manu Sawhney said: "It's a wonderful aspect of how two things are so closely linked. Through the programme, more people become fit. And in this digital age, the devices also help. It's a synergic partnership."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on June 12, 2016, with the headline 'Community Play Day offers many fitness fixes'. Print Edition | Subscribe