Not every student can afford to spend money every month on a gym membership, yet few feel the need to, when every student at Paly is granted the option of using the school gym.
Whether it’s the YMCA, Jewish Community Center (JCC), Equinox, or 24 Hour Fitness, there’s no question that the commute from school to any local gym wastes valuable time for high schoolers.
As the new school year kicks off, many students have found themselves spending a large portion of their time at the new weight room in the Peery Center. While working out at school may seem unusual to some, the existence of an accommodating and accessible weight room has become an efficient alternative to obtaining a gym membership for students.
According to senior Marvin Zou, who has a membership at the YMCA, the Paly weight room has gradually become a priority for both him and his peers over the course of this past year.
“I definitely plan to go to the weight room more this year than last year,” Zou said. “I think the weight room has a lot of amazing equipment that many students don’t know about and I think I need to take advantage of the privilege of having a gym at a school.
“You can have fun working out with friends and get more fit at the same time,”
without paying a single penny. I think the usage of the gym has definitely increased as people have start to become more familiar with it.”
However, having an abundance of quality equipment isn’t the only perk to the local gym experience. Students have reported that they’ve found it easier to go
with friends, and given the nearby distance of the gym to students around campus, there won’t be that awkward and exhausting wait that people regularly experience with their workout buddies; instead they can stroll on over and get straight into an intense workout.
“Friends can’t really make a classic excuse anymore when they’re just too lazy to go,” senior Eitan Klass said. “It pushes themto hit the gym even if they don’t feel like it, and it’s a good opportunity to catch up with friends.”
Additionally, students have started going to the gym during their preps. Since the gym is open throughout the entire day, a gym session, sandwiched in between two rigorous academic courses can help academic performance and give students a valuable study break. In fact, according to Charles Basch of Columbia University, physical activity during the day may have a positive impact on cognitive skills and academic behaviors.
“Exercise is very important throughout the day and by going to the gym students will at least feel refreshed and rejuvenated as they head towards their next class,” Klass said.
One of primary usages of the gym has been by student athletes. It is essential for athletes to condition and get in shape daily, and the weight room serves as a perfect resource due to its accessibility. With teammates surrounding each other in the same room, it makes the job easier for coaches as they can give specific gym workouts to their players that can directly translate to the given sport that an athlete plays.
“It’s actually fun to workout with your entire team surrounding you,”
Senior Paul Thie
“It creates a sense of culture and motivates you to become stronger so you can have friendly competitions with one another,” Thie said.
In addition to helping athletes, the weight room has turned into such a big trend over the last few months, that students, athlete or not, have made it a popular destination to check in and hangout during the newly constructed tutorial, which requires students to stay in a certain classroom for the full 45 instructional minutes.
“The weight room has been a nice place to workout, socialize with friends, and just relax in general,” senior Stan de Martel said. “Last week I found myself trying to find a class to go to, but many of my teachers had freshman advisories so I thought to myself, hey since
“I’m going to be here anyways I might as well make some gains.”
Stan de Martel