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McIntyre Library opens fitness room

RELEASED: Oct. 13, 2009

students using fitness equipment

UW-Eau Claire students Vanessa Meyer, left, and Chelsey Quine take an exercise break in the McIntyre Library’s new Mind and Body Fitness Room. (UW-Eau Claire photo by Rick Mickelson)

EAU CLAIRE — University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire students, faculty and staff have a new place to exercise on lower campus — McIntyre Library.

The library and the university's Crest Fitness Center worked together to create the Mind and Body Fitness Room on the second floor of the library (Room L2025).

"The room will allow students, faculty and staff to take a break from their study time or work day to get their heart rate up and take care of their bodies while also relieving the stress," said John Pollitz, director of the McIntyre Library "This is a pilot project to see if the library can play a role in enhancing wellness on campus."

Crest Fitness Center provided the equipment, which includes a stationary bike and an elliptical trainer that are constructed so people can read or study while using them, Pollitz said.

"There is great value in offering a place in the library for people to read or do homework while also working on themselves," said Lisa Schuetz, director of the Crest Fitness Center. "This was a wonderful idea by the library staff and Crest is very excited to partner with them."

Peggy Govan, an office associate in the library, suggested the fitness room idea, Pollitz said. Staff at Crest Fitness Center worked with the library to make it possible, he said, adding that he is aware of only one other university library in the country that has a fitness facility in it.

Students who have used the room have shared positive comments, Pollitz said. Students have said exercising during study breaks gives them an energy boost that helps them stay focused, he said.

The fitness room sits next to a room that provides space for students to work on puzzles during study breaks, Pollitz said. University Recreation and Sport Facilities soon will offer chair massages in that room, he said.

"The opportunity to partner with the library to provide a space and equipment where individuals can exercise their mind and body is an innovative way to help promote wellness to the students and staff," said Vicki Funne Reed, director of University Recreation and Sport Facilities. "We are looking forward to continuing this collaborative effort in ways that fit the needs and demands of the campus community."

The Mind and Body Fitness room will be open during regular library hours. The equipment will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, Pollitz said.

For details, contact John Pollitz at pollitjh@uwec.edu or 715-836-3715, or Lisa Schuetz at schuetlm@uwec.edu or 715-836-2400.

Information also can be found on the McIntyre Library blog.

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JB/DW

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