A new year sparks the trend of new resolutions and goals, and one resolution that remains popular each year is hitting the gym.
At Ohio State, campus gyms are the busiest during the month of January, Marci Shumaker, senior associate director for the administrative programs at Ohio State, said.
“People usually come back to school with a strong motivation to be active,” Shumaker said.
A December 2019 survey gathered by YouGov, a global public opinion and data company, determined that 50 percent of Americans who made a New Year’s resolution said they wanted to exercise more.
Shumaker said the RPAC has seen about 7,500 to 7,700 daily visitors since students returned from winter break, and the first week of January this past year saw 43,000 visitors at the RPAC alone.
Shumaker said the cumulative number of swipes from all the indoor recreation centers from Jan. 7 to 13, 2019, totaled 76,379, whereas the swipes from Feb. 4 to 10, 2019, totaled 71,193 — a 6.7-percent difference.
Scott Holmes, assistant director of RPAC operations and member services, said the spike in attendance includes a spike in new gym users who are not always aware of RPAC protocol.
The biggest thing new users are not aware of is how to access the gyms — including using IDs that belong to them, Holmes said.
Holmes added that the main workout areas aren’t the only ones impacted by the increase in attendance.
“Even our fitness classes, there’s really long lines going into the classes,” Holmes said.
Holmes said new users have the opportunity to better learn equipment use through a machine orientation that is offered year-round, but misuse of equipment isn’t a major concern with new members.
If a more monitored workout is desired, Holmes suggested personal training or group fitness classes.
Shumaker suggested that if regular gym users are frustrated with a packed gym, working out at less busy times such as 10 a.m. or noon and avoiding the busiest times of 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. could help.
Shumaker said the rush will fade by the end of February, but to be on the lookout for another rush before spring break.