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Changes on TRAC by student request

It has been a semester full of changes for the Recreation and Athletic Center (TRAC), and starting with new classes and the recently opened juice bar. The most recent change comes in the form of extra time.

The Department of Recreational Sports implemented new and longer operating hours in its TRAC facility. The change put in place will keep TRAC open Mon.-Fri. from 6 a.m. to 11p.m. and Sat. – Sun. from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m.

The new hours are part of a request from the Student Affairs office, along with other student organizations who sought longer hours in place for students. As part of the request, the extended hours are in a trial period from the implemented date, until the end of the 2012 fall semester, with the option to carry over the change into the 2013 spring semester.

Facility Supervisor Aislinn Bartlett explained that TRAC is going to be showing a few slight changes in the coming semester, which began in late Sept. with the opening of the TRAC Juice Bar. She added that students have responded well to the juice bar being put in place, and that they are eager to submit suggestions and comments in order to improve the addition for future semesters.

Also new for this semester was the addition of a group exercise program, Lower Body Blast. Bartlett said that along with this, Zumba, Yoga and Yogalaties have been popular group exercise programs among students. She added, “All the classes are really low key, you don’t have to have athletic abilities by any means, they can just be a lot of fun.”

As it currently stands in their 2009-2014 Strategic Plan, the Department of Recreational Sports’ mission is, “…to meet the needs and interests of all who study and work at the University of Illinois Springfield.” According to Bartlett however, with the changes TRAC is undergoing, the mission statement is being revamped this semester in order to reflect the new approach.

Another way students can take advantage of all that TRAC has to offer is by participating in their Outdoor Adventure Trips series. The trips are open to students and community members alike, and require some additional costs.

“We do some day trips which include kayaking or canoeing on Lake Springfield. Then we also do overnight camping trips,” said Bartlett. “At one point it was even discussed to do a sky diving trip, so there is definitely a lot of diversity in [this program] for a lot of different people.”

Additionally, TRAC offers intramural sports from basketball and volleyball to squash and cricket – and they are always looking for new suggestions for offerings to students. Bartlett said that the program has gotten a lot bigger this semester with so many students interested. Similarly, TRAC and PAC co-sponsor Wacky Wednesdays and Fundamental Fridays which work to get students involved in on-campus programs. Activities range from free throws to games, with the opportunity to win awards and prizes.

“A lot of people think that it’s just people who work out regularly that can come here, but it’s really for everyone. You can learn a new sport; it can even be a social thing,” said Bartlett.

With plenty of new offerings at TRAC, as well as its extended hours, there is something for students and faculty alike.

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