Throughout Southern California, from LA to OB, parks and beaches have been experiencing an influx of organized joggers or people exercising. Personal trainers are taking their classes out doors to public beaches and parks, to take advantage of the great weather. Every public beach has seen its swarm of organized fitness groups using the public space – at times – for a private profit.
There is a pushback happening. Local residents at different beach cities have taken issue with the group fitness classes. And they’re complaining about the human traffic jams in parks and on beaches enjoyed and appreciated for their beauty, solitude, nature-setting, etc.
Up in Santa Monica, the city is dealing with what it calls “fitness fanatics” in its Palisades Park, right on the ocean. The park has become a giant outdoor gym on most days with stunning ocean views. This has become a problem for local residents, whose complaints have been heard in City Hall. The city is talking about cracking down on the fitness craze, and officials are putting together guidelines to regulate trainers who use public parks and beaches for their classes, which could result in higher fees.
The LA Times reports that:
Even some personal trainers admit that the scene at Palisades Park has gotten out of control. Although some trainers and boot camp operators have city permits and insurance, there are unlicensed instructors there as well.
The city estimated that in a single week in October, 73 group fitness classes and 74 private classes were held in Palisades Park. Trainers estimate that hundreds of people are served by a few dozen instructors.
Santa Monica is definitely not the only Southern California city dealing with this new type of problem:
Redondo Beach allows only city-sponsored classes in public parks and beaches. Beverly Hills prohibits groups larger than two from its parks, and the city of Los Angeles charges boot camp operators $60 per hour.
Go here for more from LA Times article re Santa Monica.