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A "senior citizens' playground scheme"

 
 
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 02:11 am
Quote:
Why Germans might need a bus pass to go to the park

Jess Smee
Wednesday November 29, 2006
The Guardian

White-knuckle rides and adrenalin-rush games will be off the agenda, but German pensioners are looking forward to having their own playgrounds tailored to suit their more sedate tastes. Likely to make their debut in the Bavarian city of Nuremburg next summer, the Seniorenspielplätze (senior citizens' playgrounds) will include bowling, giant chess boards and areas for card-playing. There may also be some additional features for more energetic park users.
"I am considering a running track, a path for roller-skating, a soft badminton court and a trampoline, which is easy on the joints," said Horst Förther, the head of sport and deputy mayor in the city. "All activities can be carried out slowly so that the old people aren't pushed beyond their limits."

http://i10.tinypic.com/40crm2x.jpg

Designed to boost fitness and keep boredom at bay, the playgrounds would incorporate what Förther called "brain-jogging" - activities that stimulate the mind.
If it proves a success, the Nuremberg prototype may be adopted across Germany, a country that is struggling to deal with an ageing population. A sluggish birth rate and rising number of healthy elderly people has caused a rethink on pension and social provision - not to mention yielding unusual new political players such as the pensioners' pressure group, the Grey Panthers.

The senior citizens' playground scheme was inspired by a Finnish invention, dubbed "three-generational play" by its creators. Research there showed that just three months of regular "playing" helped old people to improve their balance, dexterity and speed.

The question of whether the new playground will be strictly out of bounds for the under-60s depends on funding. If money is short, an existing children's play area may be revamped to make it multigenerational.

But, for a spokesman at the regional government, one thing is crystal clear: "Our old people definitely won't have to negotiate swings or slides."
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 02:15 am
The BBC reported earlier this year about the Finnish project.

SmartUs project
Quote:
The SmartUs project is building a playground for three generations. The objective is that besides children, adults and senior citizens will come and play, together.
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detano inipo
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 08:45 am
Walter, thanks for the post. Another common sense idea from Europe.
.
Let's hope it catches on.
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Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 02:52 pm
I'm not sure that age segregation is always a good idea.
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 03:05 pm
Noddy24 wrote:
I'm not sure that age segregation is always a good idea.


Certainly not - that's one of the ideas behind these projects.
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Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Nov, 2006 03:22 pm
Walter--

Quote:
White-knuckle rides and adrenalin-rush games will be off the agenda, but German pensioners are looking forward to having their own playgrounds tailored to suit their more sedate tastes. Likely to make their debut in the Bavarian city of Nuremburg next summer, the Seniorenspielplätze (senior citizens' playgrounds) will include bowling, giant chess boards and areas for card-playing. There may also be some additional features for more energetic park users.
"I am considering a running track, a path for roller-skating, a soft badminton court and a trampoline, which is easy on the joints," said Horst Förther, the head of sport and deputy mayor in the city. "All activities can be carried out slowly so that the old people aren't pushed beyond their limits."



This doesn't sound like three-generation entertainment to me.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Nov, 2006 03:41 pm
You're correct, Noddy.
(I was referring more to the SmartUs project .... and what I'd read [in German papers in German] additonally about the Nuremberg project.)
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Nov, 2006 05:21 pm
Well, age segregation is not always a good idea; I'll agree with that. I do think the park idea, as one of many kinds of parks, or as part of a larger park, is a fine one.
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Noddy24
 
  1  
Reply Thu 30 Nov, 2006 07:13 pm
I don't mind watching the young and energetic--providing that they aren't going to know me down as part of youthful high spirits.
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