On Aug. 1, CCU's fitness center initiated a new dress code that affects all students, faculty and staff who constitute the campus. This policy does not allow gym-goers to work out if skin below their shoulder blades and the midsection is showing.
This rule is enforced by asking people to change their shirts. If another shirt is not applicable, then one can be provided if asked, according to Tara Josey, associate director of campus recreation.
"We never deny any one access, we will offer you a shirt," said Josey.
Josey said this move was hard but necessary to prevent illnesses from spreading.
"It wasn’t something that was taken lightly,” said Josey. “We researched a dozen other campuses on what their clothing policies were. In an effort to still allow people to wear athletic attire that has the freedom to expose shoulders and have the movements needed and with at least providing more barriers to disease transmission, this is what we came up with."
The goal of the new gym rule is to decrease the spread of diseases and infections by limiting the amount of skin visible while using the equipment.
“It's your gym,” said Josey. “You are paying money to come here and we are trying to protect you as a user."
There are other actions to help limit the risk of developing disease or infection, such as using the wipes provided by the gym to clean and sanitize the equipment before and after the workout. Also, the spread of illnesses can be limited by accepting the hand towels given out to wipe away any sweat.
Brandon Richardson, a senior at Coastal, claimed that he would not let this new policy affect him attending the gym.
"I have been going to the gym since I was a freshman and if they want to keep us from getting sick, then so be it,” said Richardson. “I will still get my workout in."
According to Josey, the gym is another way to help promote healthy standards and the new regulation is just another way to enforce wellness.
Accompanying the new dress code, there is also a new rule on what types of beverages can be brought inside the gym. The gym is now a water-only facility.
Members at the gym still want people to attend and they are willing to accommodate anyone if needed.
Clarification on the dress code is located inside the facility and posted on their Twitter.
Tasha Newcomb, October 2015