Healthy opportunities available for students

Jeston Parks, Joplin (far left), about to be tackled by Tanner Lux, freshman undecided major (center), during a football game Nov. 16.

Jeston Parks, Joplin (far left), about to be tackled by Tanner Lux, freshman undecided major (center), during a football game Nov. 16.

Nate Billings

Working on one’s health is something many people do on campus. However, some students may not always have the time to focus on it.

Cindy Webb, fitness and wellness director, said time management can be one of the problems students face when making healthy decisions.

“The nation has been concerned about the obesity epidemic,” she said. “Used to, we tried to help them lose weight, but now we work to prevent the weight gain.”

Webb said the obesity problem can strike anyone on campus.

“People gain an average of 45 pounds from the age of 20 to the age of 45,” she said.

Webb said students should know about keeping fit, not losing weight.

“Students need to be made aware of the benefits of not gaining weight,” she said.

She said students have a chance to exercise more often during the day, but may not take the opportunity.

“Every time we have to walk, we should walk,” Webb said.

She said students often get into bad habits during the winter months.

Cortney Tate, senior health and wellness major and student fitness coordinator, said students also develop bad habits while in school.

“Quit saying that tomorrow, the next day or after Christmas I’m going to start this diet,” she said. “Start today.”

Tate said if students get into bad habits now, those bad habits may follow them throughout their life.

She said it is important to work on making exercise part of a person’s daily routine.

“Make it a priority like brushing your teeth,” Tate said. “Don’t just exercise to lose weight.”

Webb said there are several things students can do to help them exercise more during their busy schedule.

“You always hear, ‘use the stairs instead of the elevator,’ but sometimes I say use the elevator at the other end of the hallway so you at least have to walk there,” she said.

Also, exercise does not have to take place all at once.

Both Webb and Tate said students can exercise in shorter periods of time and still benefit.

“A lot of the health concerns can be eliminated with 10-minute bouts per day,” Webb said.

She said the problem does not lie with students only, but with people in general.

“We want people to become more active,” Webb said.

“If you have to study, use the step climber,” Tate said.

Tate said the equipment in the Student Life Center allows students to put their books on holders, allowing them to read and study while exercising.

However, both said walking is an important part of keeping in shape and keeping healthy during the school year and on break.

“Walking is something almost everyone can do,” Webb said.

The holidays do not have to keep people from exercising.

“They need to start their New Year’s resolutions early,” Webb said. “People say they are going to wait until after the holidays to get in shape so they blow off having good habits in between. When it’s over, they’ll be just that much further behind.”

Some students, however, are taking advantage of the clear skies to keep in shape.

Adam Johnson, freshman undecided major, said he and his friends wanted to play football while they could.

“The sun is shining in November,” he said. “We don’t know how much longer it’ll be like this.”

He and 12 other students brought cones out to the lawn in front of the SLC to set up a make-shift football field on Nov. 16. The group usually plays racquetball every Wednesday, but decided to try something different.

Christofer Moore, freshman CIS major, said he enjoys playing and exercising while he can.

He said it is a good way for people to stay in shape and have fun at the same time.

Johnson and Moore warned against playing too many video games and said they would like to see more people come out to play with them.

“People get lazy during the winter,” Johnson said.