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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Brandeis fitness facilities are out of shape

Published: February 10, 2012
Section: Opinions

A good university needs a good gym and Brandeis should be no exception. Although we have the Gosman Sports and Convocation Center, and I admit that you can pretty much do anything you want there (there’s a place for volleyball, track and field, basketball, football, softball, fencing room, tennis, soccer, etc.), the cardio and weight rooms need improvements. Both rooms are very small and seem almost hidden; I got lost a lot while trying to find the cardio room, which is accessed by opening the door at the end of a corridor and going down three flights of stairs. Additionally, these rooms should not be separated. To be more efficient there should be one large gym with both cardio machines and weights.

Brandeis is not known for being a very athletic university, (we have a Quidditch team but not a football team) and I understand that more importance is given to academics than to sports, which is the way it should be. The problem is that, for those of us interested in exercising but not interested in sports, the choices are very limited.

I wonder why, if the Village has its own gym, other quads don’t have at the very least a few machines available for students. I have often heard people complain about the location of Gosman; during the winter it is too cold and too far to walk there. Having a small cardio room in each quad would solve this problem and make students happier.

Adding exercise equipment is expensive, but I wonder why Brandeis approved the use of $3 million on a pool that has limited hours for students not on the swim team. The pool hours are challenging; students can use the pool for two hours at a time, three times a day—with the exception of weekends—(lap hours are 7:15 to 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday). Not only is the pool inconveniently crowded during this times but it is also very inefficient and very unfair. Many more students would be able to take advantage of the brand new pool if, instead of limiting its use, they simply gave the swim team three or four hours per day to practice (preferably in the morning) and left the rest of the time open to the remaining student body. I have to confess that I was extremely disappointed by the management of the pool.

Another problem that I have with athletics at Brandeis is the lack of a space designated exclusively for dancers. Last semester I went to “Dancing with Adagio” twice a week and I was very surprised and upset when I realized that even a dance club as important as Adagio does not have its own room to practice (they usually alternate between a few rooms in Gosman).

Although there is more than one problem with athletics and facilities at Brandeis, there are many things that could be improved very easily. In fact they do not require the use of millions of dollars (as was the case with a pool that almost no one can use anyway). The few problems there have more than one solution, they could be solved quickly and make students much happier to be at Brandeis.