The Fitness Center is a good starting point for a healthy, well-rounded life

The gym membership includes access to the six-lane junior Olympic size pool. Photo by Bianca Gallegos
The gym membership includes access to the six-lane junior Olympic size pool. Photo by Bianca Gallegos
The boxing room is open to everyone with a CSUN gym membership. Trainers are always there ready to teach you a routine to follow and get in shape. Photo by Bianca Gallegos
The boxing room is open to everyone with a CSUN gym membership. Trainers are always there ready to teach you a routine to follow and get in shape. Photo by Bianca Gallegos

For the incoming freshman, stepping foot at a new campus can mean making new friends and finding out how to release the stresses from a demanding college course load.

Getting a gym membership is a good way to take care of both.

“One of the biggest things of working or even joining the gym is that you become popular,” said Aron Tiongco, shift supervisor for the Fitness Center, located at the University Student Union.

“It’s funny how many head nods or hellos you get from just working on campus. You feel a little bit more of some sense of community and connected to the school,” he said.

“The main thing about the Fitness Center is that it’s all inclusive,” said Michelle Messiha assistant director of A.S. recreational sports.

The fitness center includes cardiovascular equipment, strength equipment, a six-lane junior Olympic size swimming pool, and group fitness sessions.

Some sessions include the beat down hour which is an intense workout exercise recommended for those who are at an optimal level of fitness, Pilates, a yoga class in the fall, a turbo kickboxing class and a Zumba class which is a Latin flare exercise class.

For students who are not proficient with how to use the equipment at the gym, there are personal trainers who can help. Through a partnership with the kinesiology department, student interns assist members, correcting their form.

“Members can sign up on a one-on-one session with the personal trainers,” Messiha said.

“During that session they can either show you how to use the equipment or they can put together a workout plan for you. They can also do a fitness assessment which is checking your body composition, your body fat, do a sit and reach test which tests the persons flexibility and a three minute step test to measure your cardiovascular fitness,” said Messiha.

All of this is free. It’s included once a student buys a gym membership or the day pass.

Eugene Sou, 21-year-old finance major, said he would advise all of the incoming freshman to “buy the gym membership because it gives you access to a variety of things like a thousand classes. You can take kickboxing, aerobics, you can use the pool, do rock climbing and meet with personal trainers who can advice you on nutrition.”

“The one nice thing about the boxing room are the different levels of training made available to students who are at different fitness levels,” Kim Nguyen, a 22-year-old, child development major said.

Nguyen cleared the air for females not to view the boxing room as an aggressive place dominated by guys who box each other, because “sparring is not allowed.”

“The boxing room doesn’t involve boxing each other but rather a routine consisting of using the speed bag, conditioning, heavy bag, abdominal workout and more,” she said.

Other services that come with gym membership is access to the recently renovated locker rooms. Gym members are allowed to use the lockers to leave their belongings while working out but must take off the lock at the time they leave.

The gym is open to everybody; students, faculty, staff, and community members said Tiongco. “If you have a motivation to get fit, the gym is a great place to start,” he added.

The gym is open Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. For more information call the Fitness Center (818) 677-3604. Or visit their website at www.csunas.org/asrec.