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Bruins not pumped by overcrowded Weights class

Senior Sean Cullers demonstrates a long arm plank for the Weights class. Photo by Dylan Walters

Weights training is an incredibly unique and useful class for Bruins. The requirements to pass are very simple, but the primal goal of students in the class is to gain a passion for working out and to see clear improvement. 

There are many ways for students to use their time in Weights class. Most students like to mill throughout the weights room and get a little bit of everything, but some like to hover mainly around the most popular equipment, such as the bench-press, squat rack, and stationary pull-up bar. But a sad few of the students in class are not as devoted, and just take up time and space, according to Bear River Junior Jace Rath.

“I think that the class has too many kids that just pretend to be working and don’t actually use the class wisely; it’s very frustrating to see,” he said.

Most students at Bear River don’t like to sign up for athletic classes after Freshman PE, so students who are lacking in graduation credits commonly end up in Weights. Weights Teacher Scott Savoie says he wants kids in his class to get the best experience possible. 

Strength gain is measurable and I want kids to see that improvement and hopefully develop a life-long passion for working out,” said Coach Savoie. 

An informal poll of 5th period Weights, reveals that about half of the students in the class have at least some experience with lifting weights and actually signed up for the class; the rest is either completely new and willing to learn fast, or they were thrown in just so they could get some graduation credit. 

Senior Jonathan Rice, a standout member of Weights class, believes that there is a large skill gap between lifters in the class. 

“The amount of experience some newer kids in this class have really interferes with the more experienced people,” Rice said.

A common problem occurs when newer kids in the class improperly use equipment, and don’t take the time to learn the correct techniques. But it can sometimes be difficult for new lifters to learn at all without specific instruction. Around once a week, Coach Savoie instructs the class as a whole about new workouts. However, without enough equipment to go around, some kids just never learn. 

The restricted access to equipment can inadvertently prevent kids from completing their required participation, and not completing participation requirements results in a lowered grade. This can be a problem for newer students as they need to learn the machines first, while students who had previously taken the class can easily work on whatever they wish. 

Coach Savoie says his optimal Weights class would have 34 students maximum, but his 5th period class actually has 37 students. This number may only be a few more than the prime maximum, but 34 students already leads to the room having barely enough equipment for everyone. 

Senior Sean Cullers is a stellar student and hard worker. 

“I really enjoy weights training, but there’s a pretty big problem with how many kids there are in the class; not everyone can be working at once,” he said.

Most classes offered at Bear River are not affected by having an amount of students above the recommended maximum, but a class such as Weights struggles to provide resources to all the students at once. This imbalance causes a rotation of students around the Weights room that can sometimes result in an unfair amount of time spent on certain equipment by certain students. 

Overcrowding can be a problem in any class, but weights training is especially affected, making the class fall short of teacher and student expectations.

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Bruins not pumped by overcrowded Weights class