Yesterday after my 2 morning classes at Nassau, I drove the 2 miles to Adelphi University, where I’ll be attending school in the fall. They were hosting a 2 hour orientation for transfer students, and it was nice to see presentations geared specifically for students coming from different institutions. After a meet-and-greet and presentations from staff and current students, there was a resources fair for students to learn about on-campus activities. After inspecting the study abroad program information, (They have overseas-student teaching…how cool!?!), I perused the table with information from Campus Recreation.
I was a little disappointed when I saw sign up sheets for step, pilates, Zumba, and fitness orientations, and not very much more. The student working the table turned out to be a grad student, and we ended up discussing on campus activities, and training ideas. After learning a bit about intermural sports, I asked about the facilities. I had already seen them from 2 previous tours, but I wanted an ‘inside account’ on what the gym was like; I wanted a gauge of what the lifting environment was like. He didn’t leave me with the impression that the gym had a big time atmosphere like other gyms I’ve been in (UD’s Hen House feels pretty good), but he did suggest that I go snoop around and check it out.
Adelphi recently renovated Woodruff Hall and built the Center for Recreation and Sports; both facilities are top notch. Here is an excerpt from the Adelphi Recreation website listing the top-of-the-line equipment in the “Recreation Fitness Center”:
Recreation Fitness Center
Our new state of the art, 5,000 square foot fitness center has everything needed for a complete workout.
- Cybex selectorized weight training circuit
- 14 free weight stations
- Cable machines
- Stretching area
- 28 cardio machines featuring (mostly) Life Fitness with entertainment such as iPod connections and 17″ personal TV screens, enhanced training with landscaped views, virtual trainers and USB data connections for tracking personal workouts.
Now, if you know me or have read through a few posts, you’ll know my reactions to this. I might say things such as “Cybex selectorized weight training circuits are relics of the 1980’s” or “28 Cardio machines is 26 too many” (They did happen to have two fantastic dual-action ellipticals, ideal for interval training.) I might question the ‘stretching area’ that lacks foam rollers, or even ask why you need to watch a TV with a landscape view and track your workouts with USB data connections.* I glanced at the dumbbell rack and was dissapointed in only went up to 100lbs. While there were many new, shiny pieces of equipment, that I’m sure are well utilized, there were few things that screamed, “I will provide you with an amazing training experience.” Let’s talk about the few things that DID scream this.
Adelphi had 4 beautiful half racks, arranged in this 2 x 2 fashion, as well as a full rack (which is on the left, near the mirror.) I can’t tell you how excited I am to use these racks. There are a number of reasons why I like these half-racks. Most importantly, the presence of 4 of them means you’ll almost never have to weight to squat, bench, military press, or row. Unless an entire fraternity decides to come in and perform bicep curls in the racks, I can’t see workouts being slowed down by any weighting time. (See what I’ve done there?) Also, because they’re half racks, but they have those sturdy safety bars to catch bars, I’m actually going to feel safer performing big lifts on them. I can’t really explain that, but I’ve always preferred the aesthetic of the half rack. At the top there are multiple grips for your vertical pulling variations, so I’m sure that chin-up and pull-up varieties will run rampant. These racks are pretty tall, so setting up my TRX should be pretty simple, as I won’t have to constantly shorten it. Also, because of their proximity to the dumbbell racks, super sets should be pretty easy to organize. Finally, and most importantly, is the presence of band pegs! I’m sure that they were either included, or somebody checked every option when they were ordered, because very few schools have them, but they are there none-the-less. With pegs available at the top (for assisted lifting) and at the bottom (for resisted lifting), I’m going to be in accommodating resistance heaven. This is good, because the grad student I spoke with told me that they had an in-house powerlifting meet last year. I’m looking forward to using the pegs and not dealing with the 5 minute, 3 person set up when I want to use bands on the full rack at my current gym. These will certainly make it easier to work harder.
There are some nice racks at Adelphi. Between 4 half racks and 1 full rack, a cable station, a fairly large set of dumbbells, and using some of my own gear, I’m looking forward to using their new facilities. Hopefully I’ll find some like minded people that get just as excited about terms such as ‘Central Nervous System’, ‘External Rotation’ and ‘Metabolic Conditioning’ as I do. Let’s go Panthers!
*The answer is probably because steady state aerobic training is extremely boring and inefficient, and you need every distraction you can to help you behave like a hamster on a wheel.