Get Rec’d at the Rec

By Sydney Fairbanks and Shianna Gibbons

The Andrew’s Recreation and Wellness Center has various services to offer Youngstown State University students and the start of the fall semester is an opportunity to get active.

Ryan McNicholas, director of Campus Recreation, said the Rec Center has a gym, adventure recreation, various exercise classes, personal training and hosts a variety of student events. 

“Campus Rec has a ton to offer students and what’s great is most of them are free or reduced costs,” McNicholas said. “Anything from wellness to fitness … we have club sports which you can enjoy [and] everything from softball to soccer [and] intramural sports.” 

YSU has around 20 different club sports such as baseball, tennis and archery. Information to join club sports will be out by the first week of school.

Club sports travel and compete against other universities and are more competitive than intramural sports. 

For intramural sports, YSU offers three leagues each semester. This semester features flag football, volleyball and 7v7 soccer. It is a one-time fee of $5 for one league or $12 for all leagues.

For those less interested in competitive sports, the Adventure Recreation program includes a rock wall in the Rec Center as well as kayaking, canoeing and skiing trips. Some student events include Puppy Palooza and yoga classes for student wellness.

McNicholas said the Rec Center is a great avenue to relieve stress. 

Not only is it physical recreation, but it’s a help for stress management and relaxation [which could include] doing yoga, climbing the wall, jumping on a treadmill or playing basketball. It’s different for everyone,” McNicholas said.

Michael Sattler, a sophomore nursing major, uses the Rec Center almost daily to manage stress. 

“[The Rec] helps me a lot. I always lifted or played sports to cope with stress. Everyone needs a ‘getaway’ and for me, it’s lifting. It really helps counteract the stress of school,” Sattler said.

The Rec Center also has spaces and equipment that groups or student organizations can rent for free or at a reduced cost. 

Cornhole boards, volleyballs, giant Jenga or a 10-person tent are available for rental. Students can also rent out a basketball court or an aerobics studio at no cost.

For those interested in group fitness, the Rec Center has Group X classes. Classes are spread throughout the week and day with different instructors. There are spin classes, yoga classes and high intensity interval training classes, which are free for YSU students.

Haley Tarr, a junior exercise science major and Group X instructor, teaches yoga and full-body fitness classes. Tarr said group fitness can be a great way to meet new people.

“[If] you’re afraid to try something new, this is the perfect opportunity to do it. You’re going to make new friends and you’re going to want to come back every week [to] compete and get yourself out there,” Tarr said. 

Full-body fitness classes are on Tuesday from 12:15 to 12:45 p.m. and yoga is on Thursday from 7 to 7:45 a.m.

The Rec Center is also an opportunity for students to work on campus, according to McNicholas. 

We employ over about 100 students per year. That includes any of our instructors, any of our trainers, any of our officials, our students working our front desk and providing customer service, our marketing students, to our health educators that we’ve had in the past to help other students along their journeys of fitness and wellness,” McNicholas said. 

The Rec Center’s first all-student event, ‘The Grill & Chill Tailgate,’ is from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m Aug. 31 outside the Rec Center. 


Students can use the Rec Center anytime during the fall semester hours with a valid YSU ID.

Fall semester hours:

Monday through Thursday from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Friday from  6 a.m. to 9 p.m. and

Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.