Let’s get Physical!

Kimberly Wilson, Opinion Editor


COD should encourage more students to work out

Exercise is vital to our overall well being but is something many college students don’t get enough of. Balancing school work, extra-curricular activities, jobs, our relationships with friends and family along with everything else can make it difficult or sometimes impossible for us to consistently work out. Many colleges and universities combat this by offering free group exercise classes in a variety of disciplines. College of DuPage should implement this practice as it would largely benefit students.

Improved memory and thinking skills, as well as increased energy levels, are just some of the many benefits colleges students can take advantage of from regular exercise. Illinois schools such as Northern Illinois University and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign are aware of this and offer free classes in disciplines like Zumba and BodyPump (to name a few) for their students throughout the school year.

COD currently has several different options for students to exercise on campus by way of the Chaparral Fitness Center, for-credit exercise courses and, of course, the walk between the BIC and the Health and Science Center. While these are all good options for students to get exercise, having group exercise classes would encourage even more students to get a work out in at least once a week. It may even encourage students to use the Fitness Center more often.

The current options for working out on campus are inflexible for many students. Many of us won’t always be able to fit for-credit exercise courses into our schedules. With the implementation of weekly exercise courses, students would be able to attend classes on their own time.

Students would also have the opportunity to try several different classes throughout the semester instead of having to stick to one routine. Part of what makes exercise fun is being able to try new classes with your friends and figuring out what works best for you.

Many other four-year colleges and universities have these classes because it’s a lot less likely their students will be able to leave campus to go to the gym. As it is now, many COD students prefer to go to gyms off campus because they have more workout options there, and it fits in better with their schedule.

COD is always encouraging students to stay on campus, and implementing these classes would be an effective way to get students to do just that. Leaving campus to work out shouldn’t be more convenient for students.

If free exercise classes are not an option, a small fee could be charged. Any issues of potential overcrowding could be resolved by having students reserve their spot ahead of time for popular classes and ensuring no one is allowed to join each class once it is at full capacity. Even though, overcrowding most likely would not become a problem given so many fitness areas on campus are vastly underused at present.  

As we get older, cultivating the habit of regular exercise gets increasingly difficult. In implementing weekly exercise classes, COD would be doing a great service to their students by helping them make exercise a fun and important part of their lives.

Our physical and mental health is greatly affected by the amount of exercise we get. When we feel good, we’re able to put more effort into school activities. This would be a great way for COD to give back to its students and show they want to do everything possible to help them succeed.