There are many opportunities to stay active while living in Charleston, especially at the Student Recreation Center on campus, which is available for each student at Eastern.
Paul Noble, the facility coordinator and professional intern at the Student Recreation Center, said there are plenty of intramural sports to get involved in.
“We have all the major sports,” he said. “Outdoor soccer is starting in two weeks, and sign-ups are open now until Sept. 5. After that, we are going to have co-rec basketball.”
He also said this semester the rec center will have both men’s and women’s volleyball intramurals, but next semester there will be co-rec volleyball.
Brianna Barajas is a senior middle-level education major, and she works at the recreation center as a team sports supervisor.
“We offer a wide range of sports every fall and spring that now includes eSports,” she said. “Our eSports for this fall include FIFA and Madden.”
Other sports available at the recreation center include flag football, badminton, tennis, wiffle ball, bowling and dodgeball.
For students looking to get involved in the intramural sports on campus, Noble said students can sign up online at www.IMLeagues.com, or stop by the recreation center for more information.
Barajas said students can create an account on IMLeagues using their normal school login information.
“Through IMLeagues, (students) will be able to join teams, create their own team and join the sport they want to participate in,” she said. “Students would visit www.imleagues.com/EIU/registration.”
The recreation center also offers fitness and dance classes, according to both Noble and Barajas, and schedules can be found both at the recreation center and on the facility’s social media pages.
“The rec center offers a variety of classes throughout the week,” Barajas said. “Some examples of these are HIIT, Don’t Skip Leg Day, Early Bird Yoga, Gun Show, Kickboxing, Panther Power, Spin and Tone and so many more.”
Noble said all classes are free and there is no need to sign up in advance.
“(The cost) is included in your student fees,” he said. “Just bring your Panther Card.”
What the recreation center does not have, however, are personal trainers, according to Noble.
“It is another qualification that you have to train people for,” he said. “It’s just not something that is feasible right now, unfortunately.”
He then said there are steps a beginner can take in order to feel more comfortable at the recreation center, without the need of a personal trainer.
“We are offering facility tours,” he said. “It’s not personal training, but any beginners that aren’t sure how to use a piece of equipment or aren’t sure about the various areas of the rec can sign up for a facility tour. We cannot prescribe a fitness regime, but we can demonstrate how everything works so (beginners) can have a better understanding.”
Noble said the fitness classes are a great way to stay active.
“They’re good because they get you in that group environment,” he said. “You don’t really have to think about what you’re going to do, you can just come and follow what our trained instructors set out for you.”
He also said the classes are a great way to get a workout in, especially when schedules get too busy to spend a lot of time working out.
“It doesn’t have to be a big, scary chunk of your day,” he said. “You can come in and do one of our quick classes, and that will give you your 30 to 40-minute workout for the day.”
Barajas said her best advice to avoid the dreaded “Freshman 15” is for students to find something at the recreation center that makes being active fun.
“Get a team together and play in our co-rec basketball league,” she said. “Or come to one of Instructor Madeline’s Rise and Grind class with your roommate. Come try out our new squat machines or the rock-climbing wall. Our rec center provides us with so many fun opportunities to stay active.”
Hannah Shillo can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]