Everyone pays for the rec center, three quarters of students use it

Pamela Shapiro

The typical college lifestyle is fast paced and demanding, which can make it challenging for students to find time to go to the gym. However, a portion of students’ fees goes towards a recreational center membership, which may make some students reconsider skipping the gym. It is CSU students who are paying for this facility and they have mixed opinions about this topic.

Director of Campus Recreation Cody Frye said that student fees ultimately go to both the rec center and intramural club sports. 

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“Students pay $16.07, which goes to the intramural club sports, and $123.08 goes to the student recreation center and the rest of those programs. This is based on semester months, so about nine months,” Frye said. 

Frye believes that it makes more sense for students to pay this fee rather than pay for another gym membership because there are benefits that the CSU rec center has that students will not find through a community gym membership.

“The CSU Rec Center is bigger than any private fitness in the state and the amenities it has are probably better than most places that you would pay $75 a month to use”, Frye said.

Frye said that many students realize what a leisure it is to have the on campus gym after they graduate. 

“We’ve had a lot of students who go off and start their careers and come back and say they don’t realize how good they had it,” Frye said.

The rec center averages around 4,000 student visits every week day during the fall and spring semesters, Frye said. The percentage of students that visit the rec center is high as well. According to Frye, 70-74 percent of students visit the rec center at least once during a particular year. 

Frye said that gym usage does change throughout the course of the semester.

“Usage is the heaviest during the first 2-3 weeks of each semester,” Frye said. “The 2 weeks prior to spring break are also very busy weeks. Student usage starts to fall off some after fall and after spring break each year.”

Shelby Yuhas, a sophomore majoring in health and exercise science, goes to the rec center regularly as well as works there. Yuhas said that paying for the utilities at the gym is beneficial.

“Most people think that the Rec Center is just a gym, but there’s a whole lot more to it,” Yuhas said. “Students can utilize the climbing wall as a form of physical exercise, rather than the traditional way people go to the gym. They also offer many fitness classes like Zumba and Kickboxing that will get you moving and it’s a fun thing to do with your friends.”

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According to Yuhas, the CSU Rec Center is a place that appeals to various students with different athletic abilities. 

“I think it’s important to include the rec center into our fees because exercise is an important way to keep healthy. During some of the most stressful times of the semester, physical activity is one of the best ways for your mind and body to distress. With it included, it allows people who aren’t regular gym users to use it as frequently or as sparsely as wanted,” Yuhas said.

Senior Julie Williams, studying equine science, appreciates the benefits of paying for the rec center through her tuition, but also recognizes some flaws as well.

“I like that the gym is already a part of tuition because it encourages me to go to the gym since I’m already paying for it, I might as well use it,” Williams said. “I was bad about using the gym freshman and sophomore year, but the past two years I have used it much more as I feel that I have a better and grasp on the different machines. However, I do think it would be better if people were able to pay for the rec center because some use it more than others and if there is no plan to use the gym, one should not have to pay for it.”       

Students like Sierra Seydel, a senior studying fish and wildlife conservation biology see the budgeting benefits of paying for the rec center through tuition.

“Gym memberships off campus are expensive for students on a budget, and the rec center offers the equipment and classes at a convenient location and without a monthly monetary commitment,” Seydel said.

Collegian Reporter Pamela Shapiro can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @pb_shapiro.