Less than 24 hours after KnightNews.com broke how bodybuilders were upset over a policy banning revealing “string tanks” at the UCF gym, officials said they would consider tweaking the policy.
Here’s the controversial policy: “Shirts must be worn at all times. Shirts or tops must fully cover the back, front and sides of the torso. Shirts that are manufactured or altered to expose abdominal area or ribcage are not considered appropriate.”
UCF Recreation and Wellness Center Associate Director Gary Cahen told KnightNews.com in an exclusive interview that they’re open to reviewing their policies in order satisfy the students as much as they can while still maintaining the safety needed in the gym.
“When we say back, some people have asked me, ‘Are the shoulders considered back?’ Well no, that’s not what I meant, I meant lower back. Maybe we should use the words ‘lower back.’ If students say, ‘Hey you should edit this,’ and we go ‘Let’s bring this to our students,’ we’re open to editing things,” said Cahen.
After hearing decisions like these sometimes go through Student Government, KnightNews.com reached out to SGA President Cait Zona to get her side on the controversial issue.
“I’ve seen a few posts about it, read some of the students’ opinions and also have talked to some students. It was not a decision made by Student Government, but made by the RWC. I received the full etiquette packet that explained the new rules and regulations. Since hearing the push-back from students, I have recently reached out to the Director at the RWC to relay the message of the students. The health, safety, and environment of the facility is of high importance, but so is hearing the students’ voices and relaying their sentiments,” said Zona.
Scott Mauro, RWC Marketing and Communications Coordinator, told KnightNews.com that the reasoning behind the ban comes from student feedback and sanitary concerns inside the gym.
“In the end, it’s really about inclusivity and eliminating risk management (issues) of any kind,” said Mauro.
After KnightNews.com broke the story, it received attention all over social media from students like Austin Medlin, as well as others. Students were stating their opinions for both sides of the ban and why or why not the string tanks should be outlawed.
KnightNews.com talked to several students outside of the RWC to get their reactions before talking to the RWC staff.
Tim Henderson told KnightNews.com that he wants to be able to express himself as much as he can while working out on campus and that after initially hearing about the ban he was upset.
“I felt a little depressed because I know that when you come to a state university you’re encouraged to be your own person and express your spirits. I come to the gym to try and express myself and express what I am passionate about and what I love,” said Henderson.
Below is the raw video of the interview KnightNews.com had with Marketing and Communications Director Scott Mauro and Associate Director Gary Cahen.