In just over a month from now, Brandonites will finally have a new, state-of-the-art fitness facility to use.
The doors to Brandon University’s Healthy Living Centre will be open for regular public use on Jan. 14. Memberships are now on sale.
"There’s packages aimed at everybody in the community," said BU spokesman Glen Kirby. "All ages, all fitness levels, depending on what part of the facility you want to access. You can have a full membership, you can have access to the track only, so depending on who you are and what you want, there’s a wide range."
A full membership includes the fitness room, gymnasiums and indoor track. For adults between 18-24 years old, an annual membership costs $389, while a four-month membership costs $155. If paid monthly, the cost is $45. The fees are the same for faculty, staff, alumni and seniors.
For those aged 25-54, the annual fee is $475, or $179 for four months. Monthly, the cost is $49. Brandon University students pay $35 per semester. Daily passes for all ages are $7. Membership rates are on par with other local gyms — Fitness Quest’s monthly adult rate is $49, while the YMCA is $48.50.
If it’s just the track you’re after, an annual membership costs $135 for all ages, $75 for four months, $99 for a 20-visit punch card or $49 for a 10-visit punch card.
For a full list of membership options visit brandonu.ca/hlc.
At 4,100 square feet, the fitness room can accommodate 150 people. The floor is overlaid with a rubber composite to deaden sound and absorb jolts. Another feature is an air-handling system separate from the gymnasium, change room and office space within HLC. The entire north face of the fitness room is tinted, energy-efficient glass with very low temperature transference, helping earn the HLC a LEED silver designation for green building design.
The HLC has been under construction since August 2011. The new facility includes three full-sized gymnasiums, a four-lane walking and jogging track, a fitness facility with new resistance and weight-training equipment, and a regional hard court facility with 1,000 spectator seats.
"It’s been a couple of years in the construction phase, so now everybody’s getting to see the results of that labour and hard work, and people are very excited about it," Kirby said.
Offering memberships to the wider Brandon community will allow more interaction between the public and the university, Kirby said.
"The exciting part I think about the HLC is it’s really going to tie together the university with the community," he said. "It’s going to offer people the chance that maybe they didn’t have before, to really interact on a regular basis with our institution, and that’s a win-win situation."
Brandon University is the first post-secondary institution to offer the interactive Netpulse system in its fitness room.
Members create a custom personalized profile, and the program will track your progress. With bigger screens on the cardio machines, the program has on-demand content and has a virtual trainer feature. It also can take you on virtual runs at exotic locations around the world.
"So rather than for instance just slogging along looking at … the wall or a poster …what it will do, is actually … graphically show you that place," Kirby said.
Going for a run through Sydney, Australia, or Auckland, New Zealand, is bound to make the workout go by a bit faster.
Community members are invited to check out the new gym over the next two weeks. Open houses are being held today and tomorrow from 4:30 to 8 p.m., as well as next Tuesday and Wednesday at the same time.
If yearly memberships are purchased before Dec. 21, the member will save $20.