By Braden Smith | Contributor
The Student Life Center at Baylor sees thousands of students per day and is considered to be one of Baylor’s esteemed facilities, but the top complaint about the SLC is not about the quality.
The student body’s main concern about the SLC is the size of the weight room. While there are many additional facilities inside the SLC that the students can use, the weight room is the most heavily occupied room.
Baylor recently upgraded the equipment in the SLC’s weight room, even re-arranging the floor plan for the positioning of its equipment, but the problem still remains. At most hours of the day, the SLC weight room is overcrowded, and the demand for its commodities is too high.
The main issue with the overcrowding is that students have busy schedules and don’t have enough time to spend on a long workout. Students have rigorous classwork and studying that has to be met, and a long workout can take away from students’ time. In many cases, most students do not have time to spend over an hour in the weight room waiting to use their desired equipment.
Another issue is that most students cannot avoid using the SLC. Students live on a limited income and most cannot afford to pay for an expensive gym membership in the surrounding community. These students have to rely on the SLC for all of their fitness needs, and this means giving up valuable time from their schedules.
There are several obvious solutions such as building an additional weight room or expanding the current weight room. In reality, building an entirely new weight room would not be fiscally responsible given the amount of reconstruction that the Baylor campus already needs. However, expanding the existing weight room, or even completely converting the Russell Gym into a weight room could be done over the summer when demand for the weight room is lower.
Russell Gym is currently split into three sections: a weight room, two basketball courts and small classrooms. If Baylor were to remove the two basketball courts, which are rarely used, and use the additional space for more gym equipment, then there would be a decreased demand for use of the SLC weight room. With students spread out between Russell Gym and the SLC, there could be an even flow in each gym which would solve the overcrowding issue.
As it is, the SLC, with all its amenities and commodities, utilizes a very small space reserved for weight lifting, and the demand for this space is too high.
Senior accounting major