How many times have you waltzed into the gym only to find that every elliptical is taken by a fellow gym-goer? Chances are you picked one of Wade King Student Recreation Center’s busiest times to beef up your bod. There are a few predictable trends concerning the busiest times to exercise at the Rec Center.
“I would definitely recommend mornings for a more relaxed, less busy visit,” said Assistant Director of Marketing and Member Services of the Rec Center, Bob Hofstetter in an email. “Weekends are less crowded as well.”
As of Feb. 19 a total of 231,767 visits had been paid to the Rec Center since Sept. 19, 2013, according to statistics provided by Hofstetter.
Operations coordinator for the Rec Center, Tamara Jansen, said the busiest times of the gym are typically from 4 - 7 p.m. on weeknights.
“I couldn’t say exactly why this is, besides speculate that it is because students are more active in the afternoons after courses are over,” Jansen said in an email. Hofstetter also noted that there is a surge of visitors between noon and one, when featured Fitness Express classes are free for all gym members.
Building Advisor Katrina Shelman has worked at the Rec Center for three years as a student employee and has noticed not only a weekly pattern, but a yearly one as well.
“I’ve noticed the first couple weeks of school in fall quarter it’s really busy, but also right after New Year’s, because everybody has their New Year’s resolutions,” Shelman said. Her co-worker, five-year student Dylan Gordon, has developed a special name for the beginning-of-winter crowd.
“Ah yes, the resolution-ers,” Gordon said. “Right after spring break is busy too, because a lot of people travel and might eat more than they normally do. Also, the end of spring quarter is pretty busy as well, because everybody wants those beach bods.”
Though there are times when the gym is packed to the brim, this doesn’t create a regular problem for visitors or staff. Signs and machine programming enforce a 30-minute maximum use on treadmills and every elliptical, Jansen said.
“Congestion per se isn’t something we necessarily have a problem with. It is more trying to abide by the capacity of the different areas and making it a safe environment,” Jansen said. “For example, at times the weight room will see extremely high use and has to be monitored very closely.”
The slowest time for the weight room, Shelman said, was during the Super Bowl.
Gordon agreed that the weight room is significantly less crowded throughout the NFL football season - especially Sunday and Monday night.
“I think there was only an exchange student and a Bronco’s fan in the weight room on the Super Bowl. The Bronco’s fan was like ‘I just had to get out of my house, it was embarrassing,’” Shelman said.
According to Hofstetter, the least busy day for the school year at the gym was Dec. 22 with 158 visitors, before the university closed for winter break.
As the pattern may have predicted, the busiest day of the year was in the beginning of winter quarter, Hofstetter said. On Jan. 13, an annual high of 3,236 people checked into the Rec Center. The average number of visitors in a day ranges from 1,000-2,500 people.