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Interactive fitness trails make debut in Romeoville

Published: Wednesday, July 30, 2014 10:48 p.m. CDT
(Lathan Goumas –
Kristine Wahlgren uses a smartphone Wednesday to test out a QR code on a sign along a running trail in Romeoville. The sign is one of five that are part of a program to help encourage fitness and trail usage in the village. Each sign has a code that will link people to exercise videos using their smart phones.

ROMEOVILLE – Video, mobile technology and fitness are coming together in Romeoville at the Commonwealth Edison trail near John J. Lukancic Middle School.

Members of the Romeoville village staff, recreation center staff and residents tested out the new QR Code Fit Trail Wednesday in a kickoff event, lunging and arm twirling their way down the pathway.

The Romeoville Department of Parks and Recreation staff had earlier that day finished installing six QR Fit Trail stations along the ComEd trail, aiming to promote fitness in a fun, modern way.

Parks and recreation director Kelly Rajzer said the trail provides a different option for fitness.

"The mayor and board like to promote different types of fitness opportunities for residents," she said. "It's another means for our residents and their families to get out on the trail."

The village contacted the Virginia-based QR F.I.T. Trail, which created the stations to use with smart phone-accessible fitness videos.

As trail-goers stop at a station, they can scan quick response codes through a QR code scanner application on their phones.

When the code is accepted, a video starts playing on the phone detailing the exercise and how it helps the body. The station signs states how to install the scanner application on the phone.

The user can choose between three difficulty levels for each exercise.

Starting at the middle school, every half mile a new station provides new activities. And exercises change every month.

Resident Ashley Carter is a member of the Romeoville Fit 4 Life Fitness Center and goes to many village fitness events.

"I think this is a great idea," Carter said about the QR Fit Trail. "It's good for getting in shape."

Carter said she might use the trails more often with the QR codes.

"A lot of people out there who don't know how to work out can learn pretty well with this," she said.

Rajzer said the stations will cost the village about $1,500 per year to maintain. The videos at each station will focus on four key areas of fitness, upper body, lower body, fitness and core strength.

"There are many different exercises per sign," Rajzer said. "We're showing residents how to do them. It's also nice because we can have administrative rights to see which exercises people are doing."

The village has the ability to get quarterly or monthly reports to see how many people are using the QR codes. If more people start using it, the village may install more stations in the future.

"We're going to see how it works on this trail," Rajzer said.

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