High School Weight Room DesignSport is an essential activity for high school students. Teaching adolescents how to build strong and healthy body greatly contributes to their physical and psychological development. Sport helps teenagers remove psychological boundaries and find comfort zone cultivating strong temper. Favorable environment in weight room combined with customized program for each student individually fosters self-discipline and self-control.
Proper design and layout of high school weight room first of all integrate such crucial features as weight room location including doors, windows, and hallways; customized equipment painted in school colors (optional); professional coaches and their instructions and recommendations; and amount of people per one training session including students and instructors. Ideally weight room should be spacious to house entire group of students and all required workout stations. Since an average number of students and instructors training in weight room amounts to 30 people per class the room should be 50 feet long and 40 feet wide to allow each student to fulfill his/her training program. The area should have at least 4 windows allowing for enough light and fresh air. Due to intense physical exercises being associated with increase in sweat production weight rooms should have two separate doors for those who come to train and those who are done with PE class for the day. It is preferable that benches located all round weight room replace columns typically common but still so unnecessary in weight rooms (Hodge 57). While setting up weight room equipment it would be useful to install cardio equipment and heavy training machines separately.
Theoretically at least two walls should be entirely covered with mirrors to allow students to observe themselves while working out. It is a must that treadmills and other machines meant for intensive workout are installed in front of mirrors to let students watch their movements and correct mistakes. Understandably enough, equipment represents key part for weight room and physical education in general. High school weight rooms should include the following machines:· Power racks are installed to give high school students an opportunity to lift weights according to their physical abilities and academic program developed for each student individually. Power racks are created to enhance nothing else than strength and size.
Coaches should be aware that using racks boys are supposed to have higher physical load than girls.· Free weight categories cover dumbbells standing for a pair of hand weights with permanently attached plates and barbells representing tubes which may be used with plates of different weight. Kettlebells are mostly associated with heavy trainings and effectively help in building muscle mass. The exercise ball or physio ball is good for preventing low back pain and different rehabilitation activities.· Selectorized equipment is used to add strength to legs, back, shoulders, arms, and chest.
Based on student’s individual program the coach chooses appropriate mode for his/her body position (standing, lying, seated, etc).· Cardio equipment such as treadmills and bicycles is something no one can imagine weight room without. Many high school students believe that to create the weight room one needs only treadmill. The truth is that to build strong and healthy body one needs to incorporate many different machines to reach every muscle and thus positively effect entire body. It is worth mentioning that all weight room machines for high school students should be updated and catered to needs of every individual.
Even in case of capital freeze and budget cuts sport equipment should not be something to save on. With growing technological progress including Internet access, cars, and consumer electronics today’s lifestyles are characterized with less and less physical activity. Being vitally important for physical and mental health of high school students it is responsibility of school administration to install necessary equipment for PE classes. Training sessions in weight rooms have the following effects on human bodies:· Reduced back pain· Improved heart rate· Better metabolism· Higher bone mineral density· Enhanced blood circulation (Hodge 42)However, physical exercises have positive effects only if selected individually for every student. First of all, each of them should have training program especially developed with consideration of physical features.
It particularly concerns teenagers with heart diseases or those who have recently undergone surgery and need rehabilitation programs. Thus, this category of high school students need special attention and physical loads. Use of cardio and heavy training equipment should be significantly reduced while increasing the use of free weight elements. Stretching and breathing activities are usually carried out in a separate room since they require space for mats and movable sport pieces. As in any other activity motivation in sport is a great step to success. It is a primary goal for sport instructor to be able to increase interest of his/her students in physical education and exercises. First of all, the coach should remember to bring variety to usual PE class routine.
Once students get bored they lose concentration and interest in whatever is expected from them. They lose the track of entire process consisting of exercises for each body part thus making it ineffective and pointless. Secondly, using school colors while setting up weight room for students can serve as a strong motivation for teens to achieve better results in their PE class or during any unsupervised training session. For instance, it would be a good idea for coaches in Corvallis High School (Oregon) to paint their weight rooms in white and blue colors to observe better academic achievement among their students. Thirdly, instructors should play different styles of music to make training and work outs more enjoyable for students of any weight category and physical abilities. Nothing can be more inspiring and motivating while weight lifting than favorite music. Fourthly, competition in high school weight rooms is something the coaches should block. It is associated with the fact that students with different physical abilities come to the class and are usually characterized by unequal insecurity level in terms of their appearance.
Coaches should avoid encouraging the same students even if they demonstrate the best results. To maintain equal relationships with all students it may be a good idea for instructors to come up to them after class and point out at things they have improved. Another option may be to send them to class with athletic orientation or recommend school coordinators to bring changes into their schedule adding more PE classes and sport activities. Fifthly, instructors are accountable for building a bridge between academic success and good results in sport among students. They are the ones to emphasize favorable effect of sport activities on physical and thus mental condition of teenagers. Sixthly, weight room environment should be fun and inspiring. Coaches should spread their positive energy among students to make sure they leave the class in good mood and come back again. Also, PE teachers in weight rooms should remember to use words that would enhance motivation of their students.
Keeping in mind strong influence of media stereotypes in terms of human body on vulnerable teenage mind it is recommended to avoid phrases such as “ You have to get slimmer”, “ Get rid of that fat on your hips”, etc. Sometimes coaches may try to introduce the idea of healthy diet in combination with specific set of exercises for both boys and girls. As an option, students may be asked to keep a diary and write down amount of calories they ate and time they spent in the gym.
Also, it is important that instructors have specified amount of students that work out in the weight room per one training session. With excessive amount of people in class coaches will not be able to keep an eye on every student thus making working out less effective. Students would appreciate if their teachers tolerantly and diplomatically tell them about things they should improve. And again it should be done in person since high school students are especially sensible to any comments regarding their physical appearance, body shape, and behavior. Instead, PE teachers should encourage students to celebrate their small wins and do their best to create friendly environment in the gym. Teenagers should possess clear pictures of what they will achieve if they follow all instructions of their coaches.
Works CitedHodge, Ken. The Complete Guide to Sport Motivation. New York: A & C Black Publishers Ltd, 2005.