Offbeat

By Mikey Jones


An outdoor gym built entirely from scrap and old car parts is thought to be the most extreme in the world.

Andrei Ghilan, 32, from Chisinau in the Republic of Moldova was blown away by the intensity of the free gym off the bank of the Dnieper River in Kiev, Ukraine.

Andrei Ghilan / CATERS NEWS

A gym first built in the 1970s out of old car parts and random junk has overtime become regarded by locals as the most extreme gym in the world.

Andrei said: “Imagine it as dozens of people like gladiators before going out swinging on handmade simulators. Their tendons are stretched like a bowstring, their muscles are hard as granite.

“They are like Sisyphus, lifting a stone uphill, pulling iron which is an unimaginable spectacle. The locals call this place ‘Kachalka’, the most hardcore gym in the world.

“People from all walks of life will come here with respect for each other and will encourage, prompt and if necessary, wait patiently for their turn.

Andrei Ghilan / CATERS NEWS

“Here are installed hundreds of simulators, bars, dumbbells of any weight and size. Everything is riveted with full chains, so as not to be stolen.

“Simulators in the Kachalka as they call this place are collected from all sorts of metal parts and junk.

“Units are made of pipes, corners, automobile tires, chains, cast iron radiators, caterpillar tracks, brake discs.

Andrei Ghilan / CATERS NEWS

“The exercises here are free for all and only voluntary donations are left. Money can be left to the man who bypasses the site with the words “donations for development” or left in special boxes.

“When I walked around the site for the sake of a successful shot, Vidas Blekaitis, a Latvian strongman, came to the playground.

“He lifted the bar carrying 250kg of parts. Someone whispered that this is an absolute record for the Kachalka.

Andrei Ghilan / CATERS NEWS

“Kachalka was founded in the 70’s. The initiator of the creation was not the city government but the Yuri Kuk, a member of the Institute of Cybernetics, and his associates.”