Megan C's English 400 Proposal

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Blog # 4:Two Sides To Every Story

Filed under: Uncategorized — Megan Clements at 10:59 pm on Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The problem: Plain and simple…there exists a demand for extended hours in Longwood University’s gym and this demands sprouts predominately from good students who either live healthy life styles, need to blow off some late night stress-steam- or a combination of both. One of the school’s aims, and the fitness center’s as well, is to create health students both in body and mind. Having a gym with longer hours would help achieve this goal.

The main issue with this idea rests within the fitness center’s administration and staff. The target audience for using the gym exists! Between athletes that wake up early for practice, health conscious students and the rest that use the gym to homework-detox it is evident that if some compromise could be made in hour extension, the gym would receive good use. Resistance meets its toughest match, therefore, with the staff and managers.

I anticipate from talking to gym staff members that the two sides are something akin to what follows:

1. Having the gym open a little later would be good. I could make some more money.

2. Having the gym open late at all is a terrible idea- who would want to work that late? Pointless.

Now We’re Open Later- Creative Commons


Some staff members would not mind working the later shifts because they simply need money and also, they are night owls. Some people just love the night life—we live on a college campus (people like this are bound to exist)! I would personally not mind working no later than 1pm if my work load was not too overbearing- but I’d rather be the one working out on the equipment. So, thankfully there are those out there that would not mind. Not to mention, staff during the 2 hour afternoon extension would only require a mandatory two people according to center staff members, and their job would be limited to main floor cardio/weights area- not the whole place. Less work. More money. Some people can put the two together and see the benefits.

The other reaction to this extension is reasonable as well. Why in the world would anyone want to stay up so late? Right. College students already have a lot on their plates. Some of us don’t get to bed until 2am (maybe later?). Some of us just don’t like working at night. Some of us might not like working at night knowing that the flow of costumers may be slow- pacing may be the problem. All of these are valid reasons to refuse to work extension shifts (again: extension would be from 5am-1am- a grand total of 4 hours). Here’s the answer: these staff members do not have to work those shifts. Only 2 staff members plus a supervisor are mandatory so that only requires 2 willing members to volunteer their time out of a handful of student workers. Someone is bound to be open to the idea.

This is all a game of speculation. Since the center has never tried a 24/7 or extended hour approach to health and wellness at Longwood (and since I have yet to interview a manager) it is difficult to say exactly what would work at this time, but I have listened to staff members and these two sides exist. Perhaps a test run or pre-poll of who could work these hours would be a good idea before jumping into a full-blown extension. Maybe only extend hours during a few weekdays at first, or even give incentive to those willing to work the extension. There are many possibilities, but it seems necessary that some trial run must be conducted.


In the article I found, More hours, more convenience: 24-hour gyms look at luring customers with extended hours,  these two basic issues are explored. The article mentions several gyms across the country that are starting to explore this late-night trend, among those being a gym called Energy Fitness Midtown. It serves as the trial location for another Energy Fitness location that only maintains “normal business hours” (Shull). The 24 hour center runs “as an experiment” (Shull) according to their manager, and if successful they will turn the main center into a 24 hour gym as well. Many gym owners don’t even play with the idea of extending hours, claiming that they have not heard of a high demand for longer hours- some claiming that “…[the] area is so small…” in some locations that with longer hours they “…wouldn’t see anybody in…[there]” (Shull). However, some feel that small areas are great promoters for this sort of idea: they tend to create a sense of community and also promote fitness amongst those that may be too shy to work out in bigger day time crowds (Shull).

Having extended hours could be another way to bring our Longwood community together while giving students an available outlet for health and mental wellness even at the latest hours and also encouraging those that might otherwise be hesitant to give the facility a shot. Both sides of the argument for gym hour extensions make perfect sense- it seems the real question that could sway the opinion is, is it manageable and will it get used? If yes, then we just might have a shot.


Works  Cited:

Shull, Adam. “More hours, more convenience; 24-hour gyms look at luring customers with extended hours”. The Paducah Sun. July

26 2009. Web. October 2 2013.


Megan Clements





Comment by Megan Clements

October 2, 2013 @ 11:02 pm

The works cited will not format correctly for some reason.


Comment by Michelle McMaster

October 10, 2013 @ 1:32 pm

As I’ve said before, I really love this idea, and I think you make a good point that some students would love the night hours-I know I do at my job!
I am curious how a ‘test-run’ would work? If the gym hours were only extended a few nights a week, then I think a lot of students would be too confused to try it out. I think it would be better to try to extend every weeknight at least, if not weekends right away, because if it were only Tuesdays and Thursdays (or vice versa) it could get too confusing.


Comment by Megan Clements

October 11, 2013 @ 10:08 pm

Totally agree! I actually think I clarify this in my latest blog- if I’m not mistaken. I think I elaborate the idea of a test run as a week night trial (not weekends). So, I’m saying have a trial run of, let’s say a 3 hour extension from Monday- Thursday for a week- that means 5:30am- 12am. I define weeknights as Monday- Thursday because I know that Friday and over the weekends the gym already closes earlier for reasons I’m sure are obvious…people don’t use the gym as much (probably because we’re all out drinking or away on vacation- let’s be honest). So going off the way the gym already runs there must be a reason why it already closes early on the weekends right? So I figure if there’s going to be a trial and some point to go off of it should revolve around the busiest and most promising days. Make sense? 🙂 I think I went into greater detail here than there but I wanted to clarify.

Good question!

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