FREE Gym Kanchanaburi Fitness Park
3228 Ban Nuea, Kanchanaburi 71000
No online presence found
Opening Hours: all hours
So, What is it All About and Is It for Serious Trainers?
It’s not often that I use an outdoor gym. I’ve seen them around and walked past, slightly intrigued but never that motivated to actually go and suss them out. Why? Well, I’ve never seen much equipment in them that I would normally use, and they rarely have any weights or decent cardio machines. To be honest, I’d always likened them more to a child’s playground than a gym.
But I decided to go and check this one out, largely due to the size of it and partly because I wanted to see what the fuss was about once and for all. Could I really have a proper training session here?
Location ~ Free Gym Kanchanaburi
This outdoor gym is located around 2km south of the Kanchanaburi Railway Station, just over the bridge heading west. Regardless of whether you use the Fitness Park or not, it’s well worth visiting the bridge for pretty views of the river and temple there!
Heading over the bridge, you’ll see some equipment on your left as you come off it…
Although there’s a range of apparatus in this outdoor free gym, this is not actually the main part! (You could still use it if you wanted to avoid the main area where most other people are though!) Turn right instead, into the park entrance (it’s obvious) and you’ll see the main action here. This forms the bulk of the equipment and is also where Google maps marks the location.
Option 3 is to double back on yourself from here towards the river after you turn right. Facing out towards the river, you can enjoy your workout on this smaller variety of machinery, enjoying very scenic views of both the river and temple across from it…
Facilities at the Free Gym Kanchanaburi
As you can see from the pics, there are a lot of very colourful machines here. I don’t mind admitting that I had no idea what to do on quite a number of them, but you’ll see loads here, so let’s focus on what we can do with them! Bikes and crosstrainers are obvious, but of course you can’t alter the resistance, which might be a little lower than what you’re used to. Solution: increase your rpm, ie go faster. Challenging yourself in different ways (including your adaptability to these situations!) is all part of it.
In terms of weights or toning equipment, I was delighted to come across the existence of … <drum roll please> … a barbell!
What you might be more puzzled about is how to use it. Fair. The weight is locked into a rather small space, with a range of about 50cm vertical movement. If you’re super-short, you could shoulder-press it and if you’re super-tall you could do a partial squat. Hmm, my excitement was shortlived, especially as I didn’t see any other weights in the park. Whatever you do with it, it’ll be within a pretty small range, but let me know if you come up with any good ideas!
Let’s move on…
Benches and Bars
Much of the rest of the equipment here can be broadly categorised into benches and bars. Benches lend themselves well to abs and core work, which you’ll likely to be familiar with from your regular gym training. I found both flat and inclined benches here, including sit-up style ones. Take a towel or other padding with you for a softer surface.
In terms of bars, I’m referring to fixed ones of different heights, lengths and shapes that make up this rather curious looking equipment I’m trying to figure out. So what can we use them for?
Time to get creative, guys ‘n gals! Low bars could be used for doing press-ups or planks on, whilst mid-level bars can work for tricep dips. If you can find parallel ones then practise your pommel horse skills. Ok, I jest as I imagine most of us don’t possess many, but you get the idea. High bars are perfect for pull ups, but if you can’t do pull-ups, you’re not off the hook – we’ll do eccentric ones; jump up, hold and lower yourself down as slowly as you can. This is how I learnt to gradually build up my strength to do pull-ups back in the day.
Why Free Gym Kanchanaburi Is Valuable – Training Mode On!
Instead of focussing on what we can’t do here, let’s focus on what we can do – it’s all about mindset. Perhaps the biggest pluspoint of this park is that you are in a spacious area outdoors, with like-minded people wanting to get / stay fit. Kanchanaburi Fitness Park is a training atmosphere – you’re with other people who are also trying to achieve their fitness goals, at whatever level. To me, that’s equivalent to turning up at gym to train, as opposed to trying motivate myself to come up with a constructive workout to do in my accommodation (I’ve done that too but it’s psychologically tougher).
Given the pros of being in a group training environment, but without all the equipment you’d like, it’s worth considering travelling with a gym toy or two, to enrich your workouts when you’re in this situation. (And it could be worse – you could only have outdoor space and no park). I travel with some resistance bands, though recently I have thought about purchasing a TRX instead / in addition.
Resistance bands are more versatile as they don’t require anything extra, BUT a TRX provides you with more challenging options, though it requires something to wrap it around. Tree branches, bars in playgrounds are both good options.
Running Track at Kanchanaburi Fitness Park
What also drew me to Kanchanaburi Fitness Park was the image of what looked like a running track on maps.me (a very handy app, especially for pedestrian routes and hiking trails). Running around busy Thai cities which often have poor quality pavements, a lot of traffic and a general lack of rules on the roads(!) makes for less than ideal running conditions. Noticing the existence of this place was enough to lure me over promptly!
If you were expecting lane markings and a fancy surface to run on, then think again – this may have existed once but not today! The track inside the stadium looks like it’s been dug up, but if you stay outside the low fence that surrounds the stadium, you’ll see another two-lane track. I think one might actually be a cycle lane, but don’t let that worry you – you’re in Thailand so anything goes! And in any case, I didn’t see a single cyclist throughout my run – you’re in the countryside here, not Piccadilly circus.
You’re away from traffic noise and indeed general noise – this Kanchanaburi running track is cardio bliss.
Summary of Kanchanaburi Fitness Park
I hope you’ve enjoyed my rundown of the Kanchanaburi free outdoor gym, and that you’re able to make some use out of it. If you’ve found this useful, I’d really appreciate your support in the form of a coffee or small donation. This allows me to continue to fund my travels, research gym and write articles which I hope will inspire you and others.
If you could take moment to show you’re appreciation, you’ll make my day!