Orientation: Gym expands to include new fitness center

(Graphic by Autumn Mariano)

Weber State University recently opened the Wildcat Center for Health, Education and Wellness, an expansion on the gym. The new additions offer students more recreational opportunities and classes than ever before.

“This new addition will be specifically for the drop-in recreational user,” said Campus Recreation director Teri Bladen. “If you came to the arena previously, sometimes it was closed down because of the track meets or some clinics. With the Wildcat center expansion area, we are always going to have an option for the drop-in recreational user. We are very excited about that.”

The gym area offers a variety of fitness and intramural sports activities, many of which are free to students. Others have reduced rates for students.

“We have about 20 different offers that we will have this next year — tournaments and leagues,” said Intramural and Club Sports coordinator Kosti Efstathiou. “We have normal sports like flag football, soccer, volleyball and basketball, and then we are throwing in some other sports that maybe aren’t as familiar to people. It provides more of a level playing field for the recreation people.”

Some of the new intramural programs include inner tube water polo, broomball, goalball and Quidditch.

“We always try to get people to come out and play and have fun and meet new people,” Efstathiou said. “We want people to meet new people on campus, especially if you are living on campus.”

Some of the new classes that will be offered at the gym include TRX suspension training, virtual indoor cycling and foam rolling.

“Foam rolling is a great class,” said fitness coordinator Ken Grasso. “It is probably going to be one of the most popular classes that we will be rolling out this fall. It’s a great stress-reliever. A lot of people hold a lot of stress in their muscles. We teach them how to roll out everything from the back of their neck down to the bottom of their feet. In 30–45 minutes we’ll have people rolled out and relaxed.”

There are classes for all fitness levels. Grasso said the staff is friendly and always willing to help, and that he doesn’t want anyone to feel left out or intimidated in the new gym.

“I would suggest being open to taking whatever it is that you will enjoy,” Grasso said. “I tell everybody to come on in and sample the classes and find something that you enjoy. If you enjoy it because of the music or the instructor or the format, it doesn’t really matter. You are trying to create a new habit or a new behavior. If you don’t enjoy coming, you probably aren’t going to maintain it.”

The Davis campus has also opened a new building with a fitness center. The center is 3,200 square feet and offers cardio and fitness equipment, along with two group exercise rooms and locker rooms. It also contains a recreation office so students can sign up for activities such as intramurals and fitness classes held at the Ogden campus.

“I hope that (students) recognize the benefit of getting some new friendships,” Bladen said. “It goes so far beyond physical activity. It’s fun, it’s social. You are going to meet new people, hopefully learn some stuff about getting along with others. We are going to have so many opportunities with new programs with the expansion.”

More information on Campus Recreation programs and registration for classes and leagues is available at www.weber.edu/campusrecreation.