Ruston launches newest healthy lifestyle initiatives

The fitness court sits at W. California Ave. and Henderson Street, near Louisiana Tech...
The fitness court sits at W. California Ave. and Henderson Street, near Louisiana Tech University. (Source: KNOE)(KNOE)
Published: Jan. 3, 2020 at 6:41 PM CST
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Ruston launched its newest healthy living initiatives Friday. City officials unveiled phase 2 of its Rock Island Greenway and fitness court.

"Every morning, I get up and do a half-a-mile-run here, do my workout, do a half-a-mile run back," said Michael Stogsdill-Bricker.

He says he's already gotten a taste of the new court.

The outdoor facility is free and open to the public.

"It's ease of access with the quality of the material with the quality of the place to go workout and then the expectations of what each citizen should be able to do, what they should be able to give,” says Stogsdill-Bricker, with the Visitors Bureau.

The court also features an app that can help fitness enthusiasts and even beginners get back to the gym and get in a nice workout in four or seven minutes.

"So, if I'm somebody that's fresh out of college or in college or somebody that's saying 'I am going to get that gym membership,' you can get your start here," said Stogsdill-Bricker.

Ruston mayor Ronny Walker says it "brings a totally different culture to our city. It helps us with our quality of life issues, but this facility itself, a place where college students, adults, kids, whoever can come at all hours."

The court sits next to the newly-completed phase 2 of the Rock Island Greenway. Walker says it will make it easier for cyclists and pedestrians to make their way across the city.

"We're actually connecting subdivisions up and down the Rock Island Greenway to this. So, families can walk out of their subdivision, get on this bike trail, walking trail," Walker says.

No matter which of the 7 stations people work on, Stogsdill-Bricker hopes the quick workouts lead to more conversations.

“People on this side of town can meet with people from this side of town,” Stogsdill-Bricker says. “They can meet here, they can be equals, and they can work out here. Start a brotherhood, start a community on the most beneficial place, which is a fitness court."

"It just tells you where our city is trying to go,” Walker says. “This just adds another layer of what we can provide to citizens and students who come to this city."

Walker says he hopes the fourth phase of the Rock Island Greenway will be finished by 2022.