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Demo in the Whitt: Students vote for new equipment

Campus Recreation, located in the Whittemore Center, also known as “The Whitt,” hosted a one-day 11 hour Fitness Demo Day on Wednesday in order to allow students to use and provide feedback on possible new fitness center equipment from various vendors.

According to sophomore Margo Murphy, who helped run the welcome table, “This [event] is in order for Campus Rec. to get input from the students about what they want to see in the new facilities and to see what body part they want to work out the most. We just really want the students to feel like they’re a part of it and have a say in what is really their gym.”

The idea came from the Campus Recreation department faculty and staff, who attend fitness equipment trade-shows and decided that students should not be left out of these important choices.

The most important part of the event was the student feedback. At the welcome table, there were blank comment cards and pencils with a bucket in which to place the completed ones. The bucket was already about half full by 11 a.m., one hour after the start of the event. Murphy thought this was a good sign.

“So far, I think it’s going really well. It’s only been the first hour and already we’ve had a 100 people and it’s not even the peak hours at the gym,” Murphy said. “Also we’re going to have a focus group later to get their feedback. I really think it’s the best way to include the students and pick which equipment we’ll have at the new facility.”

Student awareness for this event was created by flyers around campus, blast emails to and from sports and intramural teams, RAs, and word-of-mouth.

However, not everyone got the memo. According to sophomore Michael Auciello, “I know that some students that I’ve talked to today don’t know [about this event].”

Anyone who entered the gym at the Whittemore Center today was greeted with a huge easel poster advertising Fitness Demo Day, so it didn’t go entirely unnoticed either. 

Most of the students and staff at the event thought the turn-out was very good, especially with the free gifts from vendors drawing attention to the event. One popular machine was the Jacob’s Ladder. According to Octane Fitness representative, Matt Hennessey, this machine “let’s you simulate climbing up a mountain or hill, over and over again.”

As far as technical performance, Auciello was one student who was highly interested in the event.

“One thing that I liked was the erg machine that’s actually got water in it, because it gives different resistance than the fan-belt. There’s also a chest-press that’s really smooth and it’s unilateral, so you can use one arm or two. It seems like everyone’s jumping on the Jacob’s Ladder,” he said.

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