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Getting to know the U of C Fitness Centre

By Radhya Comar, April 13 2023

In a March survey, Forbes Health found that the most common New Year’s resolutions were based on improving one’s physical or mental health. This comes as no surprise as most people live fairly sedentary lifestyles. Whether it involves sitting through long meetings or working at a desk, the average person spends about seven hours a day in a sitting position. Yet, as we move further away from the beginning of the New Year and progress into finals season, motivation to follow through with our fitness goals decreases. For many, the root cause of this is “gymtimidation.” 

This coined term refers to the fear or anxiety one feels when entering the gym. This anxiety could be caused by many things. It could be caused by the fear of being judged by others, especially those who seem fitter than us. Similarly, it could also be caused by unfamiliarity with the gym equipment and wondering if you’re using the machines correctly. However, there are ways you could familiarize yourself with the University of Calgary Fitness Centre (KNB 155) before you even step foot on the gym floor. This article will act as your guide to gaining entry into the gym and some of its features. 

The U of C Fitness Centre is located in the main hallway of the Kinesiology complex, making it easily accessible from Mac Hall. There are also change rooms and showers near the gym for those looking to sneak in a quick workout in between classes, but change room lockers are not accessible for free and students do need to rent them by semester. Students are however allowed to bring in a drawstring bag. To gain entry into the gym all you need is your ​​UCID. Before you can enter, this card needs to be activated at the Fitness Centre front desk. This only takes a couple of seconds and sets up your card for the entire duration of your time as a full-time student at the U of C. This also gives you access to the Aquatic Centre.  

After you scan your card, you immediately enter the first floor of the gym. This initial view is easily intimidating as the space is filled with weight benches, treadmills and cycling machines. For those who are unsure about how to use these machines, the Fitness Centre offers a free orientation for any questions you may have. These are available by booking and help you not only learn the proper form and technique, but also more about the benefits of specific equipment. While masks are not required, it is still important to sanitize your gym equipment before and after you use it. This is easy, as stations with hand sanitizer and wipes are spread throughout the gym. Just taking a few seconds to wipe down the screens on your equipment and handlebars greatly reduces the transmission of germs within the facility. 

Taking the stairs to the upper level of the facility leads you to the indoor track. This track is not only for serious sprinters. Whether you want to fast-walk, jog or just cool down after your workout by walking, the track is open to all as long as you are in the correct lane for your selected activity. The upper level also includes additional weights, box jumps and vertical punching bags. 

While this is far from a comprehensive list of all of the amazing facilities and equipment offered by the U of C, hopefully it helps you visualize the area and familiarize yourself with it before even having to step foot on the gym floor. Any additional questions can be answered through the Fitness Centre website.

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