By Emily Unnone, Contributing Writer
With the year already in the third week of February, some resolutions and health enthusiasts might be on the hilltop thinking, what happened to the “New Year, New Me?” motto. West Liberty Student Life and Housing is doing all they can to help students achieve their goals, not just with a comfortable living environment, but to make sure you can reach your fitness goals. Whether it is maxing out 250 on the squat press, or just getting ready to run a first 5k, Student Life and Housing’s Pound for Pound Throwdown is here to make sure you reach every fitness goal.
West Liberty’s Kate Billings and Jim Compston from the Office of Housing and Student Life have been working hard for the past year to come up with a plan of action for students who are looking to better themselves physically. Some of these new activities and events include group fitness classes and improved smoothie nights in the wellness center.
Upgrades from last year’s already established programs include smoothie nights that are now going to include protein shakes. The “Late Night Lift” is now called “PRs (personal records) Prizes and Posedowns.”
“We hope with this program individuals will challenge themselves,” said Billings. “A board has been placed in the front where students can put down their best and then come back the next month to try and beat it.”
After working on improvements on the older ideas, new plans were put on the table. One of them was to work with professor Kathleen Wack and her group fitness class to arrange for instructors in the future. Billings and Compston had to be creative in order to save money where possible while still creating classes that are fun.
“After meeting and talking with Kathleen, we came up with the idea that at the end of the spring semester, one of her students (from group fitness) will win a group certification prize (get funded to get their official certificate) so that then the next semester our office can hire them to teach group fitness classes (Zumba, HITT, Cardio bootcamp, etc),” Compston said.
This not only allows for a student to work as an instructor but it allows for a more comfortable learning environment. Others have also donated their time to the new initiative for fitness up on the hilltop. Ashley Carter has donated five classes’ worth of time to do Cardio bootcamp this semester to get the program rolling and Chelsea Coleman, who is a current student who has her Zumba certification, is teaching a class a week for the rest of the semester.
There are more ideas that are in the process as well. Billings and Compston are in the process of contacting Exercise Physiology majors to look into seeing if any are interested in instructing a HITT class (high intensity interval training.)
With the hard work that the Office of Student Life and Housing have been able to achieve within the past year, this semester is the semester to achieve the fitness goals that any student has been waiting to accomplish.
“We are hoping over the next semester to get feedback from our initial classes to help make adjustments and better serve the students,” Billings said.
If you would like to give feedback or suggestions for the new programs, please contact Kate Billings here.