You can see it on the faces of those who visit. You can sense it in the energy in the room. This is a place of engagement, belonging, action and progression. The community of more than 25,000 strong who gather here regularly knows the power that comes from being here, and they flock through the doors every chance they get. This honored hub of activity is the newly renovated fitness campus of Cerritos College in Southern California, but it could be anywhere, really. When you create a community culture of fitness and wellness, and encourage everyone of every ability to participate, the impact is immeasurable.
“There’s really nothing you can’t do here” offers Cerritos soccer coach Benny, smiling in front of the bustling Fitness Lab, where cardio machines are humming, and high-fives are exchanged from the benches and racks that line the room. There’s also a vibrant blue functional fitness training floor, where stretching, yoga and all manner of exercise occurs, and it’s right in the middle of the action.
From Group Fitness, to an Adapted PE room and the massive Fitness Lab, the team at Cerritos is committed to making health a priority for their community, and it shows. They invested in state-of-the-art equipment from Life Fitness, Hammer Strength and Sci Fit, and took the time to work with a fitness design consultant to make the spaces as accessible, usable and welcoming as possible. “Anyone can literally walk in and use our facility,” says Cerritos’ Jennifer O’Connor, “whether you walk or roll in…that makes us really unique. We have all the leading technology to help our students succeed.”
And that’s what it’s all about at Cerritos, student life success and impact. That goes far beyond the walls of the facilities on campus. Student Paulina Jones, a huge supporter of the updated fitness and wellness facilities and the investment that the college has made, says “the benefit doesn’t just stop where the campus ends, it’s going into our homes as well.”
Some staffers even describe the updated fitness facility as a “psychic lift”, as it has raised the level of performance across the board – from academics to health to service and community activism. It’s a hub of health for the community, beyond just the physical manifestation of it.
The trends around Group Fitness are evident at Cerritos, as daily classes are crowded with students of all types who what to jump on a bike and ride along. Best-in-class spin bikes can take as many students as want to ride, and since the reopening they’ve definitely been put to the test (as there’s rarely an empty seat to be found).
Same goes for the cardio equipment, where touch screens and technology integration make it easy and engaging for students to hop on, plug in and get a workout done around their class schedules. Due to the popularity of the facility, they have special hours just for faculty and staff, so that everyone can get some fitness time in. Accessibility is a big deal, as the Cerritos team wants to make sure that anyone who wants to participate can.
The equipment was carefully selected to be of the highest quality, but also to be the most accessible, safe and user-friendly as possible. That means an expansive diversity of different kinds of equipment for different fitness abilities and experiences. It’s both a quality and a quantity puzzle that Cerritos put together with expert precision (and some expert outside guidance). “The whole project was a collaboration to create a facility that could serve almost any need, to make every student welcome, and to create an environment of encouragement, progress and success” said Rick Moser, the fitness design consultant from Advanced Exercise who worked with the Cerritos team to bring their vision to life.
Coach Tom Caines is especially happy with the result: “we went from a relatively archaic room to what might be the best community college strength performance center in the country.” The Cerritos Falcons support soccer, basketball, tennis, track and field, cross country and a host of other sports throughout the year, and they have an extensive list of state and national championships to show for it.
Despite their athletic focus and success, athletics is only a small part of the Cerritos commitment to fitness and wellness. Their vision of fitness extends to academic and professional fitness, community and service fitness, life fitness. It’s in their mission, in their vision and in their blood with 55% first generation students – inclusiveness, progression and whole “fitness” is part of every mantra. It’s built into the Cerritos culture, as the college “embraces community, diversity, innovation, and active learning,” and “develops in students the knowledge, skills, and values that prepare them to be productive participants in the global community.”
The growing impact of fitness hubs like the facilities created at Cerritos is why we do what we do. It’s not that a workout can change the world, but a commitment to fitness overall extends beyond any weight bar or machine. And you don’t need a huge facility or empty space to do it. Impact can be created in innovative, small ways, by making whatever fitness environment and experience accessible and inviting to those it serves.
The Advanced Exercise team stands at the ready to help you with creative ways to innovate, update and showcase fitness facilities of all types. With strong expertise in designing and equipping fitness spaces for any and all interests, Advanced Exercise consultants can help identify, clarify and create those exceptional community qualities that set your offerings apart from the crowd.
About Advanced Exercise
Founded in 1986, Advanced Exercise is a leading fitness equipment and facility design resource, combining more than 30 years of design expertise with access to top fitness, wellness and recreation equipment brands to help clients create fitness experiences specific to the needs of their distinct communities. Advanced Exercise fitness consultants work with clients to maximize the use of available space in any facility, sourcing the best new or used equipment solutions for diverse ranges of fitness amenity end users. For more information on fitness equipment and facility design services, visit www.advancedexercise.com or call 800-520-1112 to connect with one of Advanced Exercise’s experts.