Students “workout” how to stay in shape at home

Closure of San Francisco gyms results in increase of at-home exercise environments


Samantha Calvin | WITH PERMISSION

Sophomore Samantha Calvin uses her yoga mat in her room at home while holding a plank position. Calvin says she has practiced yoga every morning since the beginning of virtual learning this year and that she enjoys being able to control her own workouts.

Clara Bonomi and Keira Blattberg

San Francisco fitness centers have reopened as of Sept. 14, but due to various health risks, many students have opted to utilize their at-home workout spaces instead.

Although more businesses, including gyms and workout studios, are now allowing more accessible services to the public, many families, like sophomore Sofia Karti’s, continue to use parts of their homes as makeshift exercise spaces.

“My parents set up some weights, a stationary bike and a yoga mat that we all use,” Karti said. “I have been following online YouTube videos and Peloton for cycling videos.” 

Athletics Strength & Conditioning Coach Barclay Spring says it is important to stay in shape while cooped up at home, and provides a variety of ways to stay active. 

“Once you have space, there are so many different avenues you can go, from hanging a TRX or a pull-up bar in your doorway to just a simple pair of dumbbells,” Spring said. “I always say that the best exercise is the one you will do, so any modality that you like to do is going to be the best one.”

Senior Nina Sanchez previously relied on on-campus workout facilities to stay in shape. However, she now embraces the flexibility that comes with an at-home gym rather than focusing on the restriction of not having a wider variety of workout equipment. 

“I used to lift weights at Barclay’s, but now I no longer have that option,” Sanchez said. “Instead, my family uses our back house and we set up a treadmill, a rower and a Peloton bike.” 

Sophomore Samantha Calvin, who does not own any traditional workout equipment, incorporates alternative exercise methods, like yoga, into her daily routine. Calvin follows instructional yoga videos posted on YouTube by Adriene Mishler. 

“I set up a mat and I do yoga in my room every morning during my free period,” Calvin said. “I like that I can control what I do, but it’s also very hard to stay motivated.”

This lack of incentive, regardless of equipment or the accessibility to virtual workout programs, can be due to the absence of in-person guidance from a coach or trainer.

“It’s definitely harder to get motivated now that we’re at home,” Karti said. “When instructors were there to push you and hold you accountable, it was easier to stay consistent, but I will probably keep using my own workout materials because it’s more accessible.”