Perfect Fit

SF’s brand new Fitness Center boosts student health and wellness.

Students make use of the fitness center at Spring-Ford High School.

Katie O’Callaghan, Features Editor

Spring-Ford has grown tremendously the last few years. With the population continuing to go up every year, the school district buildings had to accommodate students with bigger hallways, new art studios, and a new band room.

This year, the fitness center was one that received a little extra TLC.

Within the construction completed over the last year, the fitness center was a big part of the plan to improve the school. In just over a year’s time, the high school’s fitness center transformed from a sad few bikes and treadmills in the basement to one of the best high school fitness centers in the region.

The new facility in total is approximately 10,000 square feet, with the lower level accounting for 7,000 of that and the cardio mezzanine upper level the remaining 3,000.

“A facility like the Physical Education Center allows for endless possibilities for individual/group lifetime fitness instruction, education and participation,” Physical education teacher Kevin Czapor said. “This facility is just another example of how the Spring-Ford Area School District provides such tremendous resources that are conducive to student success and achievement.”

Among the equipment gracing this state-of-the-art facility are: 16 selectorized pin machines, 40 pieces of cardio machinery, eight full double racks for free weight lifts, an assortment of auxiliary lift pieces and benches, two full sets of dumbbells, a Connexus workout station, and 35 yards of turf.

Physical education teacher Lucinda Iezzi described the fitness center in one word.
“Heaven,” she said with a big smile. “It’s all new equipment! Not only is it new and wonderful, but we even have so much unique equipment that no high school I know of has!”
Students are equally impressed.

“This is my second year taking fitness class at Spring-Ford,” Abbey O’Connor, a fitness and wellness student said. “Although I liked taking fitness class last year, the old fitness center was small, hot, had no windows, and not too many options for machines.

“This year, I’ve been able to improve my fitness so much more with the addition of the new fitness center. I love all the light that comes in through the windows making it a welcoming atmosphere. The machines are much more updated than the old ones allowing us to have a wide variety of workouts!”

After the fitness center finally opened, the physical education teachers dedicated class periods to show students around and teach them how to use all the equipment. After orientation, physical education students have had three classes dedicated to using the fitness center: one cardio class, one pull-pin machine class, and a weight training class.

Wellness and fitness students have been spending every three out of six days in the fitness center doing a variety of workouts.

“Currently in Fitness 2 we have been training where the teacher writes down a variety of workouts on the whiteboard and we partner up and complete the activities,” O’Connor said. “The large size of the center also allows us to warm up by stretching, jogging, etc on the new turf. I enjoy utilizing the new fitness center and look forward to learning and improving more.”

The school has never had such advanced equipment to use, so it was and still is a learning experience from teaching the students to creating curriculum around it. It is not in stone what will come in upcoming years with the space, but ideas are already flowing.

“ I’d love to start a minor or a club of some sort to teach spin class, a boot camp, teach tabaa or even yoga,” Iezzi said. “Those are all things I am licensed in and teach out of school, so I’d love to bring that into Spring-Ford.”

Any high school student regardless if they do sports or not have the opportunity to come after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2:30 to 3:30 for intramurals.

In the future, Iezzi hopes to expand these days or even make it in the mornings as well, but it all depends on what the students want and if there would be enough students to make the dream into reality.

Our sports teams and band have already been taking advantage of the new space to stay in shape.
“Scheduling teams to use the fitness center has been going great,” Iezzi said. “They get an allotted time and really make the most out of it!”

Creativity has played a huge role in the new center. Not only with ability to add to the curriculum, but deciding what equipment would be most beneficial to add and where everything should go. They were decisions the architect was more than happy to bounce ideas off of the administration with because they know the students more than anyone. A job they have done beautifully as seen by how effortlessly students can workout with each other and not bump into each other or not know where a piece of equipment is.