Preston enhances weight room

Lisa Ross

Former softball player Kristalyn Smith knows exactly how she will keep in shape during her final year on the Hill: by watching television.

Smith, a senior from Portage, Mich., is one of many students taking advantage of new exercise entertainment on campus.

Western installed the Cardio Theater in the Preston Center weight room on July 25.?The cost of the new technology, including installation fees, was $15,000.

The Cardio Theater includes eight televisions, eight transmitters and 29 receivers. The receivers are placed on various cardiovascular machines throughout the weight room.

“It’s a fairly simple system to use,” said Brad Stinnett, assistant director of facilities and intramural-recreational sports. “All you really need is a set of headphones.”

Users plug their headphones into the receivers and can then choose from eight different televisions and control the volume while using cardiovascular machines.

Students who want to use the Cardio Theater can bring their own headphones or purchase a pair from the Preston Center Pro-Shop for about $8.

Stinnett said he has gotten good feedback from Preston Center patrons.

“They really seem to appreciate the upgrade,” Stinnett said.

Stinnett said the new system is a lot more user-friendly than the previous system that was installed.

“The old system was not very effective,” Stinnett said. “We used to have four different televisions at four different volume levels that could not be controlled by those exercising. It wasn’t a very good system.” ? ? ?

Smith said she works out on three different cardiovascular machines three or four times a week – and uses the Cardio Theater often.

“I figure I would be watching television at home, so why not workout at the same time,” Smith said. “It helps the time pass too.”

Stinnett said he has noticed a lot of people using the Cardio Theater in the last month.

“I think that’s because it makes exercising fun,” Stinnett said.

Louisville freshman Nicole Revell said she prefers to listen to her own music while exercising. She said she still uses the televisions by watching the screens and reading the closed captions.?

“It’s good to have something to watch,” Revell said. “I think it’s great that they have that in there for us.”

Reach Lisa Ross at [email protected]