Rec rules

William Schertz

In the fitness realm, spoken and unspoken codes of conduct should be followed

For several of the machines at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center, signing up ahead of time is required. The rec center also requires shirts with sleeves and shorts that aren’t denim.

Elizabeth Myers | Daily Kent Stater

Credit: Ron Soltys

Students who spend any significant amount of time at the Student Recreation and Wellness Center should know that, like any other public place, there is an appropriate way to conduct oneself.

“Common courtesy, that’s probably the main point,” junior education major Dustin Johns said. “Things like if you have 45s (45 lb. weights) on and you’re done, take them off of the bar.”

Many of these common courtesy issues are already covered in rec center policy, such as not bringing food and drinks, but some are not, said recreation program coordinator Elle Barwidi.

“There are some things that would be unwritten rules,” she said. “For instance, nowhere is it stated that you have to wipe down equipment when you’re done, even though we would hope that you do.”

Other issues not covered in the rules are the use of profane language and public displays of affection, which are also inappropriate.

Most machines and free weights are for use on a first-come-first-serve basis, but students have to sign up for elliptical machines and treadmills. Often, newcomers do not realize this.

“Typically they (people who have taken someone’s machine) will say, ‘I’m sorry, I didn’t realize it,’ and they’ll get off,” said recreation program officer Ben Cope. “Usually it doesn’t get taken any further, but I think every situation is different when dealing with people.”

Proper gym etiquette can also include dressing appropriately.

Gym dress can include sweatpants or shorts that are not denim, and t-shirts with sleeves, as sleeveless shirts can pose a hygiene problem.

“When you have sleeves on, it absorbs a lot of the sweat,” Cope said.

Likewise, when using the swimming pool, one should also act and dress appropriately.

“The biggest thing we struggle with as lifeguards is inappropriate swimming attire,” said rec center lifeguard Kylan Ward.

Ward said bathing suits should have mesh linings. Board shorts often look like swimming trunks, but do not have this lining, and are inappropriate for the pool.

Ward said showering beforehand to keep the water clean for other swimmers is also required.

People who wish to split a lane with someone in the deep pool should make sure to ask them ahead of time.

Excessive splashing can also be an annoyance to other people in the pool.

Weight room slang

  • Bulking up – working out for the purpose of building muscle
  • Cheat – using momentum to keep a weight moving after you would have been unable to continue using proper form
  • Cycle – a period of time set aside for specific types of training
  • Failure – the point at which a person’s muscles are so fatigued they cannot complete another set
  • Forced rep – a repetition completed with help from a training partner
  • Negative – lowering a weight against gravity
  • Plate – the weights that slide onto each end of an Olympic barbell
  • Pyramiding – the act of increasing weight while decreasing repetitions on successive sets.
  • Thrash – working a muscle or muscle group to failure repeatedly during a training session; a high-intensity workout
  • Work in – to alternate with someone else when using a piece of equipment


Contact features reporter Will Schertz at [email protected].