Women Only Services - UC RecCentre - University of Canterbury - New Zealand

Facilities & Services for Women

The UC RecCentre provides a number of services for women that may help to enhance your experience at UC. You may wish to gain confidence in the weights room amongst other beginners with the help of a trainer. Or you may prefer or require the privacy of a women's only space to exercise. In providing these services, the UC RecCentre is recognising UC's commitment to equity and diversity.

We appreciate your awareness of, and co-operation with women's only hours in these spaces. We thank you for your ongoing support of the initiative.

Nicole bicep curl suspension trainer Boxing class

Snapshot of Facilities & Services

In effect from Monday 25th July, 2016

  • Women only hours, supervised and unsupervised, in selected areas of the facility as per advertised schedule. During these hours, we respectfully ask male members to use alternative areas in the facility - sportshall & mezzanine, gymnasium & mezzanine, boxing room, climbing wall, squash courts amd fitness centre.
  • Train Me - available to all members, you can request a female instructor at the time of booking
  • Start Me - available to all members, you can request a female instructor and/or female only group at the time of booking
  • Private Group Fitness classes - arrange your own group and we can provide the space and the teacher. Available upon request. Charges apply. Contact our Group Fitness Co-ordinator.
  • UC Women's Weightlifters Club - the UC RecCentre provides support to this club through provision of a qualified and experienced fitness consultant in club session times, funding 3 hours per week during term time, and 1 hour per week in non-term time, to help with technique (all levels) and general fitness queries/programming. In addition, our (male) fitness consultant, and some other local Personal Trainers choose to volunteer their own time provide coaching services. This club is a supportive group of women (and some men) who meet regularly to train together, and provide comraderie for all training levels. Check out their facebook group to keep updated and join the club.

Why offer Women's services?

The UC RecCentre is committed to providing a space where all our students feel they belong. Privacy during exercise is a cultural need for many women in our UC community and the RecCentre aims to provide culturally responsive services.

At the request of the Student Wellness Advisory Group (SWAG) , the UC RecCentre, with the support of UC MBA students, investigated whether providing women only hours would help meet the needs of women at UC. The research found that it would, and recommended the implementation of the above services. This research was presented to the Central Equity and Diversity Committee (CEDAC) which endorsed the proposal to trial these women only services and to improve our communications of existing services for implementation in Semester 2, 2016. Recommendations for the future will be submitted to these same committees at the end of Semester 1, 2017.

Is this legal?

There are many other fitness clubs in New Zealand, including a national leading chain, a University and multiple independent and smaller chains/franchises, who operate this kind of service. The legal advice we have received is that a women's only service can operate, as long as men are not disadvantaged in any way. To ensure this, all equipment that is kept aside for women's hours in the circuit room, is also available in the rest of the centre at those same times. You will find all of this equipment duplicated (and more) in the boxing room, gym mezzanine and fitness centre.

We will continue to develop and tweak our offering over the coming months, with your feedback. We encourage you to try these services, and provide feedback or suggestions using whichever method you feel most comfortable with.


  • Phone +64 3 364 2433

    Contacts Page
  • Physical Address
    22 Kirkwood Ave
  • Mailing Address
    UC RecCentre
    University of Canterbury
    Private Bag 4800
    Christchurch 8140
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