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Limited fitness center hours have reason behind them

The fitness center offers hours that are inconvenient for many students and they are asking for a more flexible schedule. However, it isn’t that easy for the fitness center to comply.
Currently, the fitness center is open from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Monday through Thurs., 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Fri., and 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Sat. and Sun.

MBA student Michelle Covington says she used the fitness center frequently last semester, but this one not as much. “I’d love to work out first thing in the morning if the [fitness center] were open at 7 or even 8 a.m. But having hours starting at 12 p.m. just isn’t feasible for many people,” Covington said. “I also know of others that would use it if it were open much earlier.”

Senior Mailee Wang agrees that 7:30 to 8:00 a.m. would be a great time to work out before her classes. “Current hours suck for those who want to work out in the morning to start their day,” Wang said.

Opening at 12 p.m. is difficult for those who wish to eat lunch at Founders, graduate student Amanda Schoofs said. “I use the [fitness center] regularly and I know that it would be incredibly convenient for a lot of people if they opened early daily, say 10 a.m. instead of noon,” Schoofs said.

Limited weekend hours also make it difficult for some. “As it is, there are only about 3 hours a day, and the weekend is the best time for me to go,” junior Nicole Stockman said.

The fitness center has 11 student workers and the positions are fairly popular according to Fitness Center Coordinator Daniel Rasay. The most frequent of users, Rasay reports, are undergrads. 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. are the busiest hours.

Though Rasay gets many requests to open the fitness center earlier, it isn’t easy to make everyone happy. “Because [the fitness center] has limited space and many different groups needing to use it, hours are limited to all parties,” Rasay said.

The fitness center is not only used by individuals; it is also used by athletic teams and strength training classes, which prevent the gym from being open to the public during earlier and extended hours.

While revision of hours seems difficult, it is not made without scrutiny. “We look at the visitor tallies at the end of the year and determine if we need to make any changes to the hours,” Rasay said.

The fitness center also recently put out a survey, currently available at the fitness center check-in desk, to find changes that users would like to see made. Due to the high amount of traffic the fitness center sees, Rasay said he wants to make sure that each of the center’s users have the best possible experience.

“We do have to take into account the amount of space and money in the budget before we do make any improvements,” Rasay said.

Despite conflicts with other groups and budget issues, the fitness center is seeking to improve its service to Mills College. “If people contact me with their concerns, I can assess the feasibility of their suggestion and give them feedback on the possibility of something happening,” Rasay said.

Fitness Center Coordinator Daniel Rasay can be reached at