Courtney Aznavoorian ‘17
The roles are reversed in the exercise program design class as the teachers become the students and the students get to be the teachers. In this program, a staff member will receive free one-on-one assessment and training by a sports medicine student. This provides a safe opportunity for a lot of hands on learning for the students, as they are taken out of their comfort zone and placed in a realistic scenario. It will be beneficial for when they start working in the real world and have to train people with different needs.
The staff members will learn about a healthier lifestyle and hopefully see results by the end of the semester. Students will also be learning professionalism and appropriateness from this experience. The program has been around for a few years now, and has recently started gaining more attention. It is currently run by Courtenay Dunn- Lewis. In her words, “This program brings the students’ foundational knowledge to the next level, building their ability to work professionally, privately, and respectfully with individuals of differing ages, abilities, and medical backgrounds.” In the past the program went on for four weeks, and now it goes on for six weeks in hopes that more results are seen and more experience is gained.
The faculty and staff who participate in this program are volunteers, and they are specifically matched to a student to work with. The students do an assessment of their client and then perform testing of their levels of fitness such as strength, flexibility, and physical activity. This allows them to design a personalized training program for their client. The students train their clients in the fitness center twice a week. Testing is repeated at the end of the semester to see how much progress had been made.
The program has a huge impact on not only the students, but it has also been successful for the faculty. One of the clients in this program is Jean Reynolds, who has participated in this program for three semesters now. Her experience with it has been very positive; they do a good job matching everyone up with the right trainer. She has liked each one she has had. She said that “this class gave me the inspiration to finally get my body moving”. They provide a good balance of challenging the client while not pushing too hard. Jean earned the title of “most improved” last semester and is very appreciative of this program for getting her this far. “They are an inspiration as well as motivation, and I hope that everyone gets a chance to see how far they too can truly push themselves.”