Courtesy Photo

Bar Life Offers Free Fitness and Life Lessons

Getting Ripped and Right Every Sunday at Dwight Murphy Park

Every Sunday at noon, a muscular, tattooed, 25-year-old Luis Muñoz welcomes a crew of dedicated bar enthusiasts to Dwight Murphy Park. But this isn’t the continuation of a Saturday-night bender — it’s a different kind of bar, the one for pull-ups, push-ups, and body-weight suspension exercises.

Muñoz is the founder of Santa Barbara Bar Life, a nonprofit that offers free group calisthenics training focused on fitness, nutrition, and clean fun. It’s the culmination of his personal path to health — growing up in a camper, he gravitated toward Isla Vista and skate parks and wound up getting into drinking, drugs, and a gang that nearly ruined his life.

Then he was given a bicycle, began riding, and realized that the cardio exercise “kind of freed my mind.” Soon he was working out on the pull-up bars at public parks. “I started learning the bar workouts were actually channeling all the negative energy, bad feelings, and anger,” said Muñoz. “I felt really proud of myself and happy.” Today, he’s a student at SBCC and will transfer to UCSB next semester.

He’s also proudly sharing his new knowledge to help others. “A lot of places offer drinking, bad food, and stuff like that,” he said. “And they are in a way destroying the community because they are making unhealthy people.” Muñoz’s free program serves as community support for troubled kids that may be suffering in the same ways that he was.

“We really want to reach out to the youth because that’s where the community begins,” Muñoz said. “Our main focus is high school students and showing them that there’s more to do in Santa Barbara than drinking and drugs.”

But his sessions aren’t just for marginalized kids, as participants range from toddlers to people in their late seventies. “Anyone can join us, no matter what your body type is, even if you’re in a wheelchair,” said Muñoz, who also offers detailed nutrition plans, tips for staying focused, and encouragement to leave unhappy lifestyles. “We’ll help you get up on the pull-up bars.”


To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Family Sues Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office For Wrongful Death

Five deputies shot Bryan Carreño 20 times.

County Race for Auditor-Controller Turns Ugly

An unexpected bloodbath erupts between Jen Christensen and Betsy Schaffer.

Gun Restraining Order Used 20 Times in Santa Barbara County

Only Los Angeles County used the order more frequently.

Four Westside Candidates Vie for City Council Seat

The election for a District 3 representative will be held on June 5.

City Extends Permit Fast-Track Program

Storefront vacancies have dropped 2 percent since program launched in August.