City clarifies policy on equipment used in exercise classes - some seniors claim that isn't what they are hearing.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

December 3rd, 2018



Last week the Gazette published a story about changes some seniors called us about with the exercise classes at the Senior’s Centre. There is a link to the news story at the bottom of the page.

The city sent the Gazette a response – statement this morning setting out their position. That response – statement is set out below:

Rob Axiak

Rob Axiak, Manager of Recreation Services.

“My name is Rob Axiak and I am the Manager of Recreation Services for the City. I would first like to apologize for any misinformation that may be out there that has resulted in this article and subsequent commentary. We are looking to send out more accurate information regarding personal equipment for fitness classes over the next two weeks.

Prior to information going, please rest assure that equipment will always be provided by the city for our fitness programs. It was never our intention to remove equipment and to force individuals to bring their own. Some who currently participate had expressed an interest in bringing their own equipment to programs for a variety of personal reasons. We fully support this and encourage anyone who would prefer to bring their own equipment to please feel welcome in doing so.

For those who prefer to have the convenience of using city issued equipment readily available onsite, well that is perfectly acceptable too!

Our goal is to remove any barriers to participation and provide individuals with options based on your own personal preference. Hope that clarifies and thank you for your ongoing interest and participation!”

A source the Gazette takes as reliable, who has asked not to be identified, said when she read the news story she went to the Customer Service desk at the Seniors’ Centre and asked what the policy was and was told that “this is what is going to happen”.

Our source asked the customer service to confirm that information with staff in the offices behind the Customer Service counter. “It took a while but the Customer service person did return and said the policy will be going into effect in the Spring and that people will have to bring their own equipment.”

Axiak appears to be saying that people participating in the exercise classes can bring their own equipment if they wish and that equipment will still be available at no cost to those people taking classes.

Our source said “this is how the Parks and Recreation people operate. Rather than make a clear statement that they publish, they float a trial balloon and wait to see what there is in the way of reaction. If there is no negative feedback it becomes policy.

“Staff don’t take responsibility for the mistakes they make.”

The city has either shifted their position or people taking the exercises did not fully understand the city’s position. Classes were informed by people delivering the exercise classes. Those people are not full time city employees involved in setting policy – they are contract people delivering a service.

Link to the original news story:

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1 comment to City clarifies policy on equipment used in exercise classes – some seniors claim that isn’t what they are hearing.

  • fj

    Really, I guess three instructors independently gave the same wrong information and members can now bring their own equipment starting in the Spring. Members already had that option , no one ever was told you couldn’t. I am glad common sense prevailed.