Students should use recreation center to exercise, not fraternize

Opinions Columnist | Journalism Sophomore

Although the Student Recreation Center can be a great place to meet people while working out, students should make sure their main focus when using the center’s facilities is fitness and not flirting.

The recreation center is a place for students to work out and get in shape—it is not intended to be a real-life eHarmony. The rec is not the place to scope out dating prospects or gossip. Students should only go to the gym when they want to actually work out.

I cannot even begin to explain how annoyed I get when I make my way to the rec center only to find it completely packed with people who are not even exercising. It is hard enough to run laps around the track. Having to weave in between groups of girls gossiping about the guys playing basketball downstairs is plain frustrating.

People come to the recreation center to push themselves to their physical limits and maximize their fitness. Using the recreation center to chitchat with friends is like going to the library to dance. The gym is a place to work out, not go looking for a date. Loitering around the rec just to meet someone or gossip is completely unnecessary and can be bothersome to people who are actually trying to exercise.

There are certain peak hours when the gym is packed with people. Overcrowding is unavoidable. Going to the rec during peak hours and then not doing anything only compounds congestion and is obnoxious.

Yes, there is a concentration of fit, attractive people at the rec. But if students want to drool over sexy Bobcats at the rec, they had better be working out at the same time. Otherwise, there are plenty of other venues on campus where students can hang out with their friends and check out the hotties.

Even worse is when students use working out at the rec as an excuse to put themselves on display. Too many times have I have gone to the rec only to see girls stretching provocatively for excessive periods seemingly in hopes of attracting a guy. If I have run three miles and a girl still has her butt in the air while stretching, the act comes off as artificial.

Guys are just as guilty as girls when it comes to showing off in the gym. Everyone has seen the guy with the excessively heavy dumbbells who does one lift and then proceeds to check himself out in the mirror for the next half-hour and flex.

Bottom line, the gym is not the place to strut. Students must realize that the recreation center is a place to work out. Although you can meet really great people while there, the end goal should be to exercise, not fraternize.