Exercise is Medicine on campus (EMOC) is a global health initiative that promotes exercise as a way to decrease chronic disease. Exercise is Medicine is designed to increase physical activity and use exercise as the best ‘medicine.’ Every year in October, Penn State’s Kinesiology department organizes a week-long series of events to spread the word about how exercise can improve the well-being of Penn State students and employees. Based on the Penn State Health Assessment, 56% of students are meeting the national guidelines for aerobic exercise (1). However, 50% of students report spending 4 or more hours per day on their computer, mobile device or watching TV (not including time for work or schoolwork).
There’s still work to be done, which is why this is a great campaign to get people moving! Health is wealth. Keep moving Penn State.
Health Promotion and Wellness (HPW) has new space. The Wellness Suite is in 20 IM building, downstairs and next to Adventure Recreation. The Wellness Suite offers many great resources for students including walking maps, Manage Stress workbooks, Smart & Safe at State guides, and free wellness services.
The wellness services are designed to help you set goals, develop skills and enhance your health behaviors. The topics include: nutrition, physical activity, sleep, stress (with an emphasis on time management or relaxation strategies), healthy relationships and financial wellness. HealthWorks peer educators facilitate the sessions. The services were developed using research-based models. Each service is designed to help students increase knowledge and learn new skills that contribute to healthy behaviors and academic success. Schedule an appointment by calling 814-863-0461.
In the suite, you will find an area with tables, comfy chairs, and a relaxation room. It’s the prefect place to study or chill out in the middle of a busy day. The relaxation room features coloring pages and colored pencils, meditation information, a zen garden, and biofeedback software. Visit the Wellness Suite this semester, open Monday–Friday 8am-5pm.
On Saturday, October 14th, 2017, Penn State Health Promotion & Wellness and Campus Recreation partnered to host the fifth annual Extreme Stater outdoor adventure race. Held at the Stone Valley Recreation Area, 23 teams navigated their way through eighteen different obstacles ranging from mental, physical, and team-building challenges.
Prior to the race, teams strategized how they would navigate through Stone Valley. Each team received a map at check-in, along with t-shirts, a goodie bag and race numbers. While some teams competed for the prizes, all were there for the fun! During the race, students enjoyed friendly competition and “outside of the classroom” learning.
Each team, comprised of four racers, had to travel from the West to the East side of Stone Valley’s Lake Perez through eighteen obstacles challenging each racer’s physical and mental abilities. Racers completed the group traverse, trail run, mud crawl, zip line, rock climbing, and so much more to try and win first place. Winners were based on how many obstacles their team finished and how quickly.
This year, we are congratulating the PSU Peacocks for winning first place for the third time in a row, finishing in only one hour and eleven minutes! Congratulations to all of the teams that competed, and thank you to both the participants and volunteers for making this the best Extreme Stater race yet! This is an event that students look forward to each fall semester. Get ready for another year of Extreme fun, we’ll see you in 2018!
Ranking of Teams
1st Place: the PSU Peacocks
2nd Place: Buns on the Run
3rd Place: The Extreme(ly Unathletic) Staters
4th Place: Barb 2.0 Members: Craig Miller, Justin Roarty Sarah Wolverton, Christina Cheruka Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes
With multiple nutrition supplement chain stores opening in State College, many students may be wondering whether or not they should take supplements. The number of protein powders and vitamin supplements on the market can definitely cause consumers to feel confused and overwhelmed. Don’t worry, a dietitian can help you to become a more informed consumer!
Many students find protein powders to be a fast and convenient source of nutrition. Whey protein, which contains branched chain amino acids, is a popular protein powder. However, supplements are not regulated by the FDA in the same way that food and medication are regulated. Supplements can be put on the market without any proof that they are safe or that they work. The FDA can remove the product from the market later if they deem it to be unsafe. The good news is that animal and vegetable sources of protein can meet all of your protein needs. If your goal is to build muscle, be sure to get a variety of protein from foods like chicken, fish, lean beef, low-fat dairy, nuts, tofu and beans. Fast and convenient food sources of protein include individually packaged servings of tuna, chicken, chocolate milk, cheese sticks, peanut butter, hummus, and trail mix. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is [0.8 x your body weight in kg = _____ g protein/day].
When it comes to vitamins and minerals, most people can meet their nutritional needs by eating a well-balanced diet. Researchers have found that fruits and vegetables have protective properties that prevent cancer, while vitamins supplements do not.
The bottom line: Real food is the best fuel source for your body, and most healthy people can meet all of their nutritional needs with food alone. Your energy levels are best when you eat a balanced diet, get adequate sleep, and exercise regularly. If you’d like more help with planning a healthy well-balanced diet, make an appointment with a dietitian by calling 814-863-0461 or by visiting the UHS website.
In association with Penn State’s Coming Out Week, Transportation Services, in partnership with the LGBTQA Student Resource Center, the Gender Equity Center, and Health Promotion and Wellness, is sponsoring a free bike safety workshop for women and the LGBTQA community on Tuesday, Oct. 10 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. The workshop will be held at 117 Weston Community Center at Penn State’s White Course Apartments.
Open to students, faculty and staff, as well as local community members (ages 18 and older), this workshop will teach participants the rules of the road and bike safety skills in a safe and inclusive environment. The workshop will also include an outdoor portion where participants will apply what they’ve learned on a beginner-friendly practice course at the Brown 11 parking lot. All participants must bring a bike and helmet to participate.
Following completion of the program, all participants will receive a free pair of Penn State bike lights.
For more information or to RSVP for the event, please email email@example.com. Spaces are limited and RSVPs must be received by noon on Tuesday, Oct. 10. More information on Penn State’s Coming Out Week events can be found via the link below:
Health Promotion and Wellness is now offering free Wellness Services for students. The services are designed to help students increase knowledge and learn new skills that contribute to healthy behaviors and academic success. Services are available for:
Healthy Relationships and Sexual Health
Stress (Relaxation and Time Management)
Each service includes three 1-hour sessions. Trained peer educators deliver the services. Students can schedule an appointment by calling 814.863.0461. The services are located in the Wellness Suite, 20 Intramural Building.
Penn State’s Exercise is Medicine on Campus program (EiM-OC) recently received gold-level status from the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM). By actively implementing physical activity as a vital sign of health, Penn State EiM-OC was awarded gold level recognition at the World Congress meeting in May 2017 (1).
EiM-OC aims to improve the health and wellbeing of students and faculty through physical activity. The initiative encourages physical activity as part of everyday life and overall health. At Penn State, EiM-OC initiatives include campus walks, push-up challenges, classroom presentations and promoting campus health services & fitness centers on social media. Every year in October, Kinesiology students and faculty spend a week at locations around University Park engaging the campus community in exercise and general physical fitness. The outcomes from the 2016 EiM week are available on Penn State’s EiM website (2).
Penn State EiM was founded in 2012 and awarded silver status in 2015 and 2016. Dr. Melissa Bopp, associate professor of kinesiology, and Zack Papalia, EiMOC coordinator, hope to reach even more students and increase the impact on the Penn State community in 2017-2018.
Have you ever tried to study or read over your notes while on the elliptical, treadmill, or stationary bike? You might want to try one of the new walking treadmill desk at the White Building Fitness Center. UPUA and Campus Recreation partnered up to bring this specialized, walking treadmill desk to Penn State. Located in the hallway to the right of the fitness center entrance, this ‘Tread Desk’ allows the user to be as productive as they would be at a regular desk, while stretching their legs and racking up steps.
Recent research has shown that sitting for too long each day is detrimental to one’s overall health[i],[ii] and has shown that Americans, on average, sit too much and exercise too little. According to Harvard Health Publications, the average person is inactive for over half their day, which can lead to lower cardiovascular health and higher rates of type 2 diabetes, cancer, and cancer-related deaths in very sedentary people[iii],[iv].
Walking treadmills like the Tread Desk provide a unique solution for individuals who would like to be more active, but due to the nature of their job, school, or other obligations, do not have time. From answering emails to reading over flash cards, the Tread Desk is a great way to multitask and save time, while getting some steps. The Tread Desk is in White Building for a trial period, so try it soon!
Looking for other ways to move more, sit less, and increase your daily steps? Then check out the Walking Club! Every Monday at 4:30 pm, students meet up in the lobby of the Student Health Center and, weather permitting, walk outside for about an hour. The route changes each week. The participants get to decide where they want to walk. Now that the weather is getting warmer, come hang out with Healthy Penn State Ambassadors for a fun and relaxing walk. It’s a great way to end your Monday and start your week off on the right foot!
Written by Healthy Penn State Ambassador, Michelle Mehallow
[iii] Biswas A, Oh PI, Faulkner GE, Bajaj RR, Silver MA, Mitchell MS, et al. Sedentary Time and Its Association With Risk for Disease Incidence, Mortality, and Hospitalization in Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Ann Intern Med. 2015;162:123-132