Rec Center 101: pandemic edition

Jackson Sorensen, Staff Reporter

The SURC gym opened its doors on Jan. 14 since the second wave of guidelines were placed. The gym looks a bit different than people might remember. 

Leslie Calaoagan, a senior in the law and justice department, who regularly frequents the gym since the new guidelines. 

“When you enter, the workers ask if you’ve completed your daily wellness check and they take your temperature,” Calaoagan said. 

There are three different sections that can be booked online, cardio, rock climbing and the weight room. The employees encourage students to stay in the area that they reserved online to respect the new guidelines. 

The courts downstairs are spaced out and mostly empty. The cardio machines upstairs are still up but lots of the equipment is still closed off to respect social distancing. What machines are open are six feet apart. 

“Honestly the time spent in the gym should be longer,” Calaoagan said. “ I like to do cardio and weights but I feel like I have to choose one or the other because I’m only allowed 45 minutes.”

Students often feel nervous about going to the gym during a pandemic. When booking a reservation, looking at how many spots are available can help students decide when the gym is not as busy. Students are encouraged to try and find a time to go to the gym that works best with their schedule and their own personal safety preferences. 

Mike Alden is a senior majoring in aviation and aviation management, visits the gym almost daily. He said that everyone who works at a desk is covered by glass and uses protection equipment. 

“You’ll swipe your card, they take your temperature and it’s just quiet. You can hear the music and you can hear people just breathing,” Alden said. “Normally you’d hear noises from people working out or even machine noises. It’s super spooky.”

Alden said that 45 minute time slots is “nowhere near enough time.” His usual workouts take between one and two hours. He feels that he is not benefiting himself with the limited time slots. 

“As you go upstairs, the track is no longer in use because there’s a bunch of weight machines on it. Alden added “45 minutes is nowhere near enough time. I go in and get one set done and ask ‘do I have enough time for my next one?’ and then they tell me that there’s five minutes left.”

The weight room is limited to five people at a time, the climbing wall at two and the facility at 20. As the phases progress, more students will be allowed in at a time. 

“What some people might not realize is that the workers clean and kick everyone out at 15 to the hour and the reservations start again on the hour. So if you don’t book an appointment on the hour, you won’t get the entire 45 minutes,” Alden said.  

Alden encourages students to do their pre-workout routine before they even leave for the gym so that they can have that whole time to just workout.