Universities with Awesome Recreation Centers
The University of Texas at Austin
You could say that The University of Texas at Austin’s Recreation Sports Center is “Texas size”, that is to say it’s huge. Well of course, huge is the only size Texans know right? With more than 40 acres of outdoor space and 500,000 square feet of indoor space at UT’s Rec. center, huge doesn’t justify it, it’s more like freeeaking huge. Longhorns have access to just about anything that tickles their fancy when it comes to fitness. Activities offered at the rec. center include indoor rock climbing, racquetball, volleyball, badminton, handball, basketball, ping pong, martial arts, cardio training, weight training and even sports no one has heard of like wallyball and squash. The facility houses personal training studios so you can work out in peace. Martial arts rooms, so you can learn how to beat up your bully. Weight training/cardio rooms so you can get swoll for the ladies and skip leg days. You can de-stress from a long day or take your aggression out with good old fashion exercise with 3 basketball courts. Or if real sports isn’t your thing they have 8 handball/racquetball/walleyball courts (just kidding, those are real sports). There’s even lounge areas with flat screen tvs so you can convince yourself you’re being healthy, because you’re at least at the gym. They offer some pretty cool classes there as well. You can learn CPR, Tennis, how to swim (if you didn’t have a childhood), indoor rock climbing, self defense and even log rolling.
It’s safe to say that The Vanderbilt Recreation and Wellness Center is pretty freaking dope. The fitness center is 14,000 square feet, it houses an indoor turf football field with a 300 meter rubber track because we all know running outside is for suckers. The center also includes racquet ball, squash and sand volleyball courts. An indoor pool with the water temperature set at the perfect temp of 82 degrees. There is a rock climbing wall that is 19 feet high with 1400 square feet of room to play around with. The main gym has three basketball courts. The fitness center has all your bulking up or toning down needs. There is even a commercial kitchen where students can learn everything there is to know about nutrition. Oh I almost forgot, they have a bowling alley with 4 Brunswick lanes and you get free shoe rentals. You can’t beat that free shoe rental. If you want to go on a sweet trip, they plan outdoor adventure trips to awesome places where the students can camp, backpack, hike, kayak and go caving. To make sure everyone is safe, they teach wilderness first aid.
Wabash College is one of the nation’s top liberal arts college. It is also a male only school, so to calm down all that testosterone the school better have a bad a** recreation center. And they sure do. (or I wouldn’t be writing about it) Wabash’s Allen Athletics and Recreation Center is a 20 million dollar facility with all the sports and fitness amenities men need when there’s no girls around. They have the usual weight and cardio gyms, tennis and racquetball courts, a 40 meter indoor pool, state of the art locker rooms and a basketball gym that seats 1800 fans. They also have the “Knowling Fieldhouse” which is a massive indoor center with 200 meter running track, multi-purpose courts for basketball and volleyball and areas to play baseball and golf. The Allen Center also contains the Shelbourne Wrestling Center.
Colby College is another elite liberal arts school that’s super hard to get into and super expensive as well. And with all that money they built themselves a really sweet fitness center. The Alford Athletic Center at Colby College has it all. It includes the Wadsworth Gymnasium, that seats 2500 people, the Alfond Ice Rink, and the Field house, which encloses an eighth-mile track, four tennis courts, a batting cage, and a climbing wall. The complex also houses a 25 meter swimming pool, 5 full size squash courts, a full fitness center, a state of the art physical therapy center, studios for yoga and saunas. But Colby College isn’t done yet. They are currently building a brand new athletic center that will open in 2020. The new recreation center will be called the Colby Athletic Complex, which when finished will be 350,000 square feet. It will have an ice rink, a 200 meter track, basketball court, commercial pool and an olympic size pool. To top it all off, it will be run by renewable energy.
The University of Chicago
Known for its very prestigious but exclusive academic programs (only 8% acceptance rate), The University of Chicago is one of the most influential Universities in the nation. It has been on the forefront of research and discovery for over a century and its alumni list is riddled with some of the most successful individuals in the world. With such a rigorous and competitive academic environment, you would think that the students wouldn’t be able to leave their study groups, but actually this school has arguably the best recreation center in the nation. The Ratners Athletics Center at the University of Chicago was designed by famed architect Cesar Pelli was opened in 2003. It is a 150,000 square foot facility that has a 50-meter x 25-yard swimming pool. It houses a fitness center that offers cardio, free weights and machine weight lifting equipment. Along with auxiliary gymnasia, classrooms and dance studios. The main gymnasium can seat 1,658 people and serves as the University’s home for their basketball, volleyball and wrestling teams. The building costed 51 million dollars to complete. There is a very notable feature on the building that is quite distinctive. It has a suspended roof that hangs from cables attached to five masks that peak 100 feet from the ground. The center received awards from the American Council of Engineering Company, the American Institute of Steel Construction, and the Consulting Engineers Council of Illinois for its excellence in engineering and design.