Inclusive Gym Update

Inclusive Gym Update – January 29, 2018
Increasing recreation services to encourage more student physical activity

Thank you to the UWinnipeg community and recreation facility members for such a strong response to our recent online user survey. Approximately 1,500 surveys were submitted and several general themes emerged which will help guide our service to the community.

Many survey respondents also took the time to provide written feedback in the comments section.  We thank you for that. We will spend the next several weeks analyzing the data and comments in a more robust manner.

As you know, in September 2017, following a series of consultations with the UWinnipeg community and student leaders, we began offering new recreation choices specifically designed to encourage and welcome more students to participate in physical activities.

Pilot project

A pilot project of Reserved Hours dedicated one level of fitness space to female and non-binary students for four hours per week. All users were able to access other areas of the fitness centre as well as the track and courts at all times, including during those Reserved Hours.

Phase One of the pilot project has now concluded and we are experimenting with a new option incorporating Reserved Hours in Phase Two, for winter 2018.

Beginning February 15, we are offering a six-week recreation program for female and non-binary students with supervised female instruction that will include a variety of activities.  The one hour class will run Thursday evenings for pre-registered members and students.

Respectful recreation spaces and services

We have taken several others steps over the past year aimed at increasing the comfort, safety and inclusion of everyone in our recreation facilities including:

  • A mandatory Code of Conduct has been completed that applies to all students, faculty, staff, community and visitors using UWinnipeg’s recreation facilities.
  • Front-line recreational staff members received training to assist in creating an inclusive environment for all and training in UWinnipeg’s Sexual Misconduct Protocol.
  • New posters and signage in the recreation facilities remind all users to be respectful and follow the Code of Conduct.
  • As of January 2018, beginner orientation sessions are being offered to familiarize new users  with our recreation facilities, equipment and programs.
  • Existing fitness spaces and equipment are being reconfigured to maximize accessibility.
  • This winter we are creating an informal Recreation Advisory Group to seek ongoing feedback from a cross-section of members and students.


Gym-use data reveals that 40% of current recreation participants are female, yet females comprise 62% of UWinnipeg’s student population. Our goal is to work towards increasing the level of participation among those students who are under-represented in 2018-2019. We will continue to adjust our operations to attract more women and non-binary people to try our facilities.

New program offering

Thursday evening program details, begins Thursday, February 15, 2018

  • six-week program
  • available to fitness centre members or UWinnipeg students
  • offered to non-binary individuals and women
  • free for members who qualify
  • small class size – 10 participants maximum, pre-registration required
  • will run once a week from 6:30 to 7:30 pm
  • supervised instruction
  • variety of activities including instruction on how to use free weights, weight resistance machines, stretching, cardio machines, using different areas of the recreation facility
  • pre-register at the Bill Wedlake Fitness Centre customer service desk by 9:00 pm Tuesday, February 13, 2018.

On behalf of the Recreation Services team, thank you for participating in our ongoing process to enhance programming so that everyone may feel welcome and valued in our recreation facilities.

Dean Melvie

Director, Recreation Facilities

Note: copies of the recreation space schedule and Code of Conduct are available at the front service desk.


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