Santa Barbara City College opens in-person fitness classes

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Not everyone is off campus this school year at Santa Barbara City College, especially those who are working to improve their physical health.

Classes have been designed to have outside instruction, and many students are enrolled. That include student-athletes.

Access to areas where fitness classes take place, along with training equipment are all routinely monitored and sanitized.

Those coming to the classes get a temperature check, there’s physical distancing and some limits on the size of groups. Usually it’s about 20.

Physical fitness classes in person have added benefits by working with others and having an instructor.

Overall, exercise is vital to a healthy body and to be prepared for any challenges whether it’s from COVID-19 or another illness.

At the entrance to La Playa Stadium, SBCC Physical Education Chair Kathy O’Connor said, “nobody is allow to be in here and work out with out a mask. So if they can’t work out without a mask they just don’t come.” 
The plan, developed quickly, starts at home, the day of a class,  with  a special phone app that sends an early morning alert.

O’Connor said, “and we answer  these  health questions and if we answer  appropriately that we  are not sick then we get what we call the green screen pass. ”     

SBCC Athletic Director Rocco Constantino said the equipment is cleaned many times daily and it’s stored in secure, locked areas.

“The school has more than enough PPE,  hand sanitizer and face masks.   They are really making an extra effort. “
 Student athletes, along with those taking walking, spinning, surfing or other fitness classes have all been able to adapt.

SBCC Soccer player Alvaro Castillo said, “It’s better to be out here together because it builds our chemistry and especially with the new players we have to get along,  they have to know each other  very well.”

Constantino said they want to see student athletes, and it’s a healthier environment for them.
“One of the reasons we wanted them  back so bad is if we brought our athletes here we would be able to monitored.  If they were remote they would be scattered  all over.  “

Being able  to work out in person not only helps them physically and mentally but also academically with their studies.

O’Connor said, “being with your class mates and being with your colleagues working together inspires each other it  is so much different  than doing things on your own on zoom.”
She also said it is a safer way to work out.  “If you really want to learn properly,  to learn the biomechanics of exercise where you are going to stay safe, you need someone to help direct that.”

Off season athletes are using this opportunity  even without full contact,   to be ready for the day they can play again.

While working out, the competitive spirit comes through. Castillo said, “because they are some that  need that person in front of them saying I need to be at his pace and I need to be with him.”

Women’s Basketball coach Sandrine Krul said,   “they’re excited, they feel better  so mental health, physical health and they do better in their classes they are way more motivated.  We love being outside,  the air, the ocean  they want to be here.”

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