December 18, 2020

SIU’s Recreational Sports and Services finds new and different ways to serve

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. — Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s Recreational Sports and Services is continuing to find new and different ways to serve students, faculty, staff and community members during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

At present, the Student Recreation Center is still open several hours daily, Monday through Saturday, with hours rotating to assure all patrons have convenient access and that the facility is properly cleaned and safety measures followed. The new spring semester hours will begin Jan. 17.

The center is also offering a wide variety of virtual and in-person fitness programs in the coming weeks and months. Many of the programs are brand-new, while favorites will return, too.

In-person class sizes are limited to assure proper social distancing for patrons’ safety. Multiple sessions are planned, and early registration is recommended. 

What’s new

Several programs will make their debut soon at the Rec, giving people the chance to try things they’ve never done before. Among the new offerings are:

  • Queenax class – SIU obtained this piece of comprehensive personal fitness wellness equipment earlier this year and is now offering a special, in-person class to show participants how to use it to maximize their workout results.
  • Barre class – this routine combines elements of ballet, Pilates, yoga and light weight training into a total body workout set to music. Two virtual sessions are scheduled, each adapted so people can do them easily at home with a chair instead of a barre.
  • Aqua boot camp – what could be more fun than splashing your way to fitness without the strain of gravity? This low-impact, in-person class is open to all fitness and swim-proficiency levels.

Back by popular demand

Virtual group fitness classes will be offered throughout the winter break. Zumba, cardio, total body, stretching and strength, yoga, WERQ, cycling and so much more are available through at least Jan. 16 for students and Rec Center members.

Two other popular fitness activities return in February:

  • The third annual Saluki Tri-Fitness Challenge, Feb. 1-28 – participants swim two miles, run 26 miles and bike 112 miles either individually or as part of a team and earn a T-shirt for completing the challenge.
  • Salsa dance – experience a virtual dance class, learning the basic steps and dance techniques in the Latin rhythms of salsa, merengue, bachata, cumbia and reggae from an accomplished professional instructor.

Register now

Everyone is welcome to participate in the programming. Some classes have additional fees, which vary depending upon the program and whether or not the participant is a student, Rec Center member or nonmember.

Sign up now for any of the upcoming classes at Member Services inside the Rec Center or online at For more information, visit the website or call 618-453-1277.