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How to get fit: a guide to using the SERC

by Kiara Alfonseca-Editor-in-chief
Thu, May 4th 2017 01:00 pm
Photos taken from Emma Misiaszek/PHOTO EDITOR
Photos taken from Emma Misiaszek/PHOTO EDITOR
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The Special Events Recreation Center, better known as the SERC, is one of Brockport's newest state-of-the-art facilities, and it can be as intimidating as it sounds. With its upper floor fitness center, huge House of Fields, and endless twisting and turning hallways, it can be difficult to navigate.

According to brockport.edu, the 10,000 square foot fitness center offers row after row of cardio machines, treadmills, ellipticals, Jacob's ladder and more. Along the left side of the gym, the walls are lined with mirrors, with free weights ready for whatever workout you're doing: back and biceps, legs, shoulders and triceps, or whatever combo fits your schedule. 

The gym can be intimidating, and the SERC doesn't have a "lunk alarm" to save you from those accustomed to the gym scene but in reality it's a place where powerlifters can thrive, runners can run and machine junkies have plenty of different materials to work with from the lat pull down to the leg press. 

If you're new to the gym, navigating is easy.

"The best way for incoming students to really take advantage of The SERC I think would be to try everything there at least once," Jennifer De La Rosa  campus recreation graduate assitant for marketing and communications wrote in an email. "You like sports and competition? Try joining an Intramural team or Club Sport, you'll make new friends and have loads of fun ... You can also go ice skating in the rink every Friday night for golden eagle skating night, which is exclusive for all Brockport students to attend!"

Director for Campus Recreation Scott Haines recommends getting familiar with the equipment and taking a buddy who will help the awkwardness of making mistakes and learning around new people less of an uncomfortable situation. When new to working out, you may feel sore, but don't worry.

"You don't need to go with silly heavy weights all the time," Haines said. "I think going in and getting familiarized with the equipment and if you haven't worked out then you're going to be sore, especially after the second day so let those muscles figure their way through the whole process." 

Timing is also key when planning your first trip to the SERC. The fitness center gets busy, and that's when the nerves come to the forefront for gym newbies. Get in at the right time and get all of the benches and mats to yourself.

Mondays and Wednesdays are the busiest days and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. are the busiest times of day, as proven by members' swipes according to Haines.

Down below on the second floor across from the Membership Services desk sits the group exercise room. In this room, Zumba, BodyPump, PiYo, yoga, TRX and more get attendees sweating and moving; the welcoming environment is a great places to get your start with exercise. Whether it be the collective cry of pain during a BodyPump squat session, the laughter during an embarrassing dance move or the collective pool of sweat after some strenuous yoga poses, group exercise can be a good fit for many gym-goers.

Group Exercise Student Supervisor Jessica Dauvergne, who teaches TRX, Pink Gloves Boxing and has much knowledge about the workings of the fitness center and other services, agrees. Calling group exercise a family, it allows for attendees can make friends each week as you regularly attend classes, while sweating it out during the classes. 

"Our group exercise program offers hour long 'breaks' of physical activity in almost every exercise domain; cardio, strength, mind and body," Dauvergne wrote. "We have something for everyone at any time, with classes taught every day of the week in the mornings, afternoons and evenings. We generate our schedule around popular class times and really try to make our program accessible to the students primarily. All classes are free to attend for students and equipment is provided."

Agreeing with Dauvergne and De La Rosa, Haines believes many students should take advantage of the services offered across the recreation center, but if there is something missing, feel free to ask him or other staff members about acquiring it. 

Looking toward the future and how exercise affects student GPAs, Haines is assisting in research  to encourage freshmen to use services at the state-of-the-art facility; it just might make your GPA soar.

stylus@brockport.edu

@KIARAALFONSECA

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