SEATTLE -- Seattle University canceled its decade-long personal training rec center program because of declining student participation.

The program was temporarily halted over the summer quarter, then officially canceled for fall, former trainer Carol Lorenz recently told the Seattle University Spectator.

“The cost was $50 per hour, $30 per half hour, and so that became cost ineffective for the students,” Kristen Christopher, Seattle University strength and fitness coordinator, told the student newspaper.

Lorenz said the personal training program began declining in fall 2008, reflecting industry-wide economic trends.

During the past school year, the program had no more than four students in it at a given time, Christopher said, compared with about 1,200 daily visitors to the center.

In early November, the school announced plans to build an 18,750-square-foot fitness center addition slated for completion by fall of 2011. The university still needs to raise $5 million toward that project, which is expected to cost $10 million. The center is slated to be built according to LEED Gold standards.

Meanwhile, Christopher told the newspaper that the personal training program probably would be reinstated in a new format, using student trainers who charge students lower rates.