Dorm exercise equipment would reduce stress


Matthew Tessler, Deputy Opinion Editor

It is 7 a.m. on a Tuesday morning in March. It is 30 degrees outside and Coles Sports Center is at least a 15-minute walk. You have an hour before class — so much for getting a workout in. These are situations that face students at NYU daily, and while they may seem trivial or unimportant at the time, they represent a trend of students exercising less frequently than they should be.

The American Heart Association recommends adults get 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week — a reasonable amount to fit into a college student’s lifestyle. It may mean less time spent sleeping, studying or watching Netflix, but exercise is proven to reduce stress. Exercise could help students lead a more holistic life by leaving them less stressed and better able to manage their time.

One way to make this easier would be a creation of small exercise rooms in each residence hall. NYU has 22 residence halls and three gyms — soon to be two and a half with the demolition of Coles and the opening of a temporary gym at 404 Lafayette. Clark Street Residence Hall members can use Eastern Athletic Club’s facilities next door, Gramercy Green Residence Hall has its own fitness center, Palladium Residence Hall has a major athletic facility and University Residence Hall can use Palladium, but many residents are still left without convenient ways to exercise inside their own facilities that don’t involve running up and down the stairwell. This lack of convenience gives people an excuse to skip the gym.

The rest of NYU residence halls should follow in the footsteps of Gramercy Green, especially those further from campus like Lafayette Street Residence Hall. This does not mean that every residence hall needs a Palladium-like athletic facility, only that each residence hall could, and should, have a modest exercise room that makes it easier for students to exercise. This would only mean a room with a few treadmills, a rowing machine or two, a few ellipticals, some weights and maybe a mirror for residents to take gym selfies. These residence hall exercise rooms would be much better suited to handle the exercise needs of its residents. Suddenly, 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day would seem like much less of hassle. The whole community could become healthier, less stressed and more efficient with its time. It would also relieve some crowding issues in Palladium when the bulldozer eventually knocks on Coles’ front door.

NYU residence halls, and the lives of its residents, could be improved by this change. These small, simple gyms would encourage people to exercise by making it more convenient. NYU students could be much healthier with much less hassle.

Email Matthew Tessler at [email protected].