New Henley fitness center to make up for limited gym space

Chapman’s newest fitness center opens Sep. 9 in the renovated basement of Henley Hall. Photo by Kento Komatsu, staff photographer

School has ramped up and Chapman students are once again settling back into their semester routines. Not limited to class, work and internship schedules, students are also taking workout plans into account.

With fitness being a crucial aspect for some college students’ daily routines, there have been long-standing complaints regarding Chapman’s main campus gym, the Julianne Argyros Fitness Center. Brittany Katcha, a sophomore psychology major who works as an employee at the main campus gym, said that she’s been told about the lack of space available for students to exercise, especially during the peak hours of 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“We get complaints about the size of the gym,” Katcha said. “It would be nice if machines could get fixed faster when they go down.”

The lack of efficiency when resolving broken amenities has led to less equipment and longer queues. Due to this issue, some students prefer to acquire gym memberships elsewhere, despite access to Chapman’s gym being included in tuition.

Colette Ngo, a junior business administration and broadcast journalism and documentary double major, prefers to train at Bobby’s Boxing and Fitness in Laguna Beach. “The gym is small and Chapman doesn’t have any boxing bags for me to train with,” Ngo said. “I’d love it if Chapman included punching bags in the gym, so people like me could integrate martial arts training during their workouts.”

If students intend to come during the afternoon hours, they may expect to wait for their turn or get their own session cut short if another student is waiting.

“Because of the limited size, there’s not enough room for more equipment and because there’s limited equipment, it creates a lot of traffic,” said Isabella Estrada, a junior health science major.

Katcha believes the problem of the gym size will be resolved when the new gym, currently under construction in the Henley Hall basement, opens Sept. 9. This addition will add on another 4,000 square feet of fitness space, which is the same size as the main campus fitness center, according to the Julianne Argyros Fitness Center website.

“It’s really great they’re expanding the Henley gym,” Estrada said. “In Argyros, there’s a 20 minute cap on cardio machines if there are lines.”

The Henley Hall gym will have new fitness equipment for strength and cardio workouts, like more treadmills, upper body machines and an open space for free weights, stretching and core workouts.

According to Chapman’s fitness and wellness page, it also include two dedicated group fitness rooms: a spin studio for indoor cycling sessions and a multipurpose group fitness room for yoga, zumba, and high intensity interval training (HIIT). The opening of the Henley gym has left Sabrina Burkholder, a junior biology major who instructs zumba at Chapman excited to teach classes in a new area, as she’s previously held classes in a Student Union room.

“In Argyros Forum, it felt less official, but now we have a set place for classes. Students can go somewhere for zumba rather than going to a multipurpose room,” Burkholder said. “I’m sure Henley will have better equipment since its purpose is to improve things.”