The fitness center and “The Box” are the two areas for Pacific University students to lift weights and work out on campus in the Stoller Center. Lately, at the fitness center, it is a rare sight to see less than 20 people in the gym at once and students are reporting it to be overwhelming. 

Only athletes are allowed to work out in The Box. It is suggested that when the fitness center is at capacity, athletes do not work out in the fitness center. Yet, the two lifting areas offer different equipment and space, making it difficult for athletes to have a proper workout in The Box. 

Koarii Sioloa, a junior and a member of the Pacific football team, said his workouts are “drawn out” due to the wait time for equipment. With the fitness center packed and The Box occasionally being reserved by sports teams, Sioloa decided to join a local gym down the street. 

“This semester I had to pay for a membership because I wanted to get a good workout in a certain time frame,” said Sioloa. 

Sioloa also pointed out that his workouts are always suffering. Either the wait time in the fitness center is long or due to the lack of equipment in the box. The box only offers free weights. There are no cable machines which can make it hard to target specific muscle groups. 

“A lot of the time I don’t finish my last two workouts because of the number of times I have to wait for someone to be done with the rack or something like that,” said Sioloa. “They should add more cables because you can do a lot of compound lifts in the box but when you want to do cable work you have to go to the fitness center.” 

A popular suggestion among the students is to bring back the reservation system used during COVID-19 restrictions. Pacific allowed students to sign up for a one-hour time slot during the operating hours of 7 am-10 pm. Now, there is no time limit and it is open for students to come and go as they please. With navigating class schedules and the busy times at the workout facilities, it can be extremely difficult to work out effectively. 

Sydney Frampton, a sophomore studying biology, found the COVID time slots helpful when it came to managing the number of people in the gym at one time. Also, when it came to her scarce free time not being wasted. 

“I found myself walking there and then if I see that it is jammed packed, I just turn around and go home because there is nothing that you can do if all the treadmills are taken or all of the weights are being used,” said Frampton. 

Savita Wilson, a senior business major, stressed that the hour time slots helped keep people using their time wisely in the gym. 

“Honestly, the sign-up was nice because it limited how many people could be there. And now, people stay in there for so long, not doing anything, like get in, get out, and it kind of forces you to do that.”

As frustration builds, students are looking for changes to be made to the current system and facilities. However, frustration has been building around this issue for years, but the indefinite wait for a solution continues.  — Emily Rutkowski

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Emily Rutkowski is a sophomore from Mesa, Arizona. She enjoys playing soccer for the women's soccer team here at Pacific University. In her free time, she loves being outdoors and socializing with friends and family.

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