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Free outdoor gyms could fit the bill admirably

Outdoor gyms are coming. It’s recession-proof recreation, since the gyms — mainly in public parks — will be free.

Ostensibly, this is a good idea. But you’ll know that, even if a newspaper ran a story about everyone getting free money, the second or third paragraph would begin “However “

However, I’m not going to do that. Sure, I see problems. There are no mirrors for the narcissi on the dumbbells. There’s no one around to guide novices on using the Heath-Robinson equipment, no one to whom you can say: “The instructions mention posterior triceps, but I don't seem to have any of these.”

Also, the idea comes from China, which makes it immediately dubious. I’ve practised Tai Chi for years, and every day a little voice in my head says: “This is a pile of cack.”

On the other hand, outdoor gyms will save you £40 a month, and the air-conditioning is brilliant. Bring them on!

Belfast Telegraph