Fitness for life


By Tyler Parsons

If you want to hold on to weak excuses for not staying in shape at BYU, stop here.

When I first arrived at BYU, my goals of getting into top physical condition were met with fierce, self-inflicted opposition: bottomless bowls of cereal at the Cannon Center and BYU Creamery ice cream. I soon learned that the college experience at BYU is all about balance, and health is no exception.

Don’t rule out ice cream indulgences and don’t forget to hit the gym or get up and move during the week. After talking to other BYU students, I learned about the many resources available on campus to promote health and fitness.

The Student Fitness Center 

The single biggest resource I can think of on BYU’s campus for staying in shape is the Student Fitness Center located in 293A of the Smith Fieldhouse.

When I was a freshman, I remember writing a letter petitioning for the student fitness center to be expanded because it was always crowded and closed during certain times of the day for classes.

In 2012 the fitness center almost doubled in size to 5960 sq. ft. and is now open Monday through Saturday from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

If you’re really worried about the fitness center being crowded, you can check the online webcam on the RB website (given below) to see for yourself how things are looking!

Because of the expansion, you’ll almost always find the machine or weights you’re looking for. The center is packed with treadmills, bike trainers, stair steppers, free weights and almost every exercise and resistance training machine imaginable to make your Freshman 15 scream for mercy!

Student activity and dance classes 

I once had a roommate who signed up for four of these in one semester. Crazy? Maybe, but once you see how many fun sports and dance classes BYU has to offer, you may also see that four years just isn’t enough time!

That is why I recommend taking the classes that take you outside of your comfort zone.

Sure it’s fun to take a basketball class if you love basketball, but your time here at BYU may end up being the only chance you ever have to take classes like ice skating, scuba diving, Polynesian dance or badminton.

To see the 40+ STAC and dozens of dance classes available (go to and check out what’s available for your next semester or term.

The two most important websites for BYU fitness:

BYU’s student wellness website:

  • Sign up to meet with a personal fitness trainer or nutrition coach for free.
  • Get the information on how to buy a semester-long pass for extracurricular aerobic and fitness classes.
  • Find links to articles and websites about fitness.
  • Download mp3 files with workout routines, relaxing music and talks about weight loss.
  • Set up your “My Health” tracker, which allows you to track your diet, exercise, weight and other important health numbers.
  • Find links to other important websites like the BYU Intramurals homepage and BYU’s Outdoors Unlimited.
  • Get info on the student health plan and the discounts that it can get you at local gyms.

Richards Building website:

  • Find out general guidelines for dress and grooming.
  • Reserve facilities for individual or group use.
  • Find out about open play schedules for tracks, pools, courts, etc.
  • Get more info on how to obtain a locker and check out equipment.
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