Home » $1M private gift will help EKU renovate weight room

$1M private gift will help EKU renovate weight room

Expected to be completed in spring

RICHMOND, Ky. (Oct. 28, 2016) — Eastern Kentucky University athletics has announced a partnership with Life Fitness to remodel the department’s weight room. With the support of Life Fitness and a private $1 million donation by Ron and Sherrie Lou Noel, the dramatically expanded and renovated first-class strength and conditioning facility will serve all 17 varsity sports and more than 300 student-athletes.

weight_room_renovation_photoThe renovation is expected to be completed near the start of the 2017 spring semester.

The new facility will feature Hammer Strength brand equipment from Life Fitness. Hammer Strength is rugged performance strength training equipment that takes what athletes dish out and helps exercisers get to where they strive to be. Hammer Strength moves the way the body is meant to move and rewards hard work with results. Results that elite athletes have been relying on for nearly three decades.

“This is going to be one of the premier facilities in the country,” EKU Director of Athletics Stephen Lochmueller said. “The process of working through equipment selection and design with Life Fitness will bring to life a facility that will give EKU student-athletes a first-class strength and conditioning experience.”

The complete production process of Hammer Strength equipment is done at its facility in Falmouth.

The Noels, of Union, have made previous donations that made possible the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity and the Noel Reading Porch.

The majority of their gift will help establish the Ron and Sherrie Lou Noel Research Endowment, a $600,000 fund that will support faculty and student research at the University across a variety of academic areas and disciplines. In addition, $400,000 will be used for this strength and conditioning renovation. Ron played baseball for three years at EKU.

The facility will include 20 platforms, 20 racks, 720 pounds of weight per platform, black polyurethane bumpers, four bikes, two treadmills, two ellipticals, four jammers, four iso lunge machines, two leg presses and four vertical leg curl machines. The facility is expected to have 90 pairs of dumbbells, more than any other school in the nation.  In addition, a 10-yard wide by 30-yard long artificial turf field will be housed inside the new weight room.  This area will allow for warm-ups, sprints, agility training and polymetrics.

“It’s everything we want as far as the training aspect,” EKU Director of Strength and Conditioning Jon-Michael Davis said. “With the platforms, the bars and the machines, there’s nothing we won’t have through Hammer Strength. Every need is addressed. Whether it’s based upon a sport, based upon an injury or based on training maturity, we will have access to everything to help a student-athlete. The look is going to be really nice.  There is definitely a wow factor which will aid in recruiting as well.”