promotional flier for a Rec program

Photo courtesy of CSU Athletics

Pink Gloves is a new class exclusively for women that's being offered by the Cleveland State Rec Center.


September 14, 2015

Rec classes set to kick off new term

By Adam Scraga

Cleveland State University is working to raise awareness and help both students and faculty alike through a series of events held the first two weeks of the fall semester.

The VikeHealth Kickoff event on Sept. 1 for faculty and staff partnered Cleveland State with WellSteps, a worksite wellness company.

WellSteps employees Jenny Irvine and Kenna Morrell explained the program and its goals over a live webcast. Participants were encouraged to complete a health assessment so they could receive personalized goals concerning exercise, diet or other activities.

Campaigns and challenges will be ongoing throughout departments to motivate others to be healthier. The first challenge, “Veggie Up!” is a five week campaign in which participants are asked to bring in a healthy vegetable snack to share with others. For each challenge completed, participants will receive points to redeem for rewards on the WellSteps website.

WellSteps will also make discounted FitBit trackers available for purchase to encourage participants to sync the FitBit with the WellSteps website to enable more tracking and goals.

Statistics show that more than 70 percent of all cases of strokes, heart attacks, cancer and diabetes were caused by bad lifestyle choices. Changing just one of those poor choices, such as exercise, diet or smoking, can reduce the likelihood of disease by half.

Some positive changes are already being made, according to Lisa Sandor, manager of VikeHealth. Over the last few years, some Cleveland State employees have lost weight, quit smoking and have been able to stop taking prescribed medication because of their lifestyle changes. Sandor said she hopes that with the partnership with WellSteps and the new campaigns, that numbers will increase.

Health and wellness are also being emphasized to students. The Cleveland State Rec Center will offer many new programs this semester. For the first time, completely free group classes will be available. More than 60 such classes, including yoga, cycling, zumba, Turbo Kick and Total Body Blast, are offered every day of the week.

Angela Kirila, graduate supervisor of fitness and wellness for the Rec Center, said she believes there is more emphasis on health and wellness now than there has been in the past.

“Everything has to do with money,” Kirila said. “Insurance companies are seeing that people who are incorporating exercise and healthy eating are a lot less likely to have high doctor bills and need surgery or become diabetic.”

Some new premium programs are being offered this semester at the Rec Center, including Insanity – a popular full body workout that has been released on DVD – Beach Body Plus and LiveFit, a course offering guidance in exercise and nutrition. The LiveFit Lifestyle class is meant for beginners, and LiveFit Extreme, for those already experienced with exercise. An American Council on Exercise (ACE) Prep course will also be available this semester. This is a 12-week course for those who are interested in becoming a certified ACE trainer.

Another new program being offered is Pink Gloves Boxing. This female-only class, intended to empower women, meets twice a week for ten weeks. It is offered in two tiers, so if a participant finishes tier one, she can move up to tier two for an extra challenge.

“It's to build women's self-esteem and feel that working out can be fun and they can do anything,” Kirila said. “I feel like that's one thing women struggle with, especially at this time and age, that they're not good enough to do something, or it's not for them, when Pink Gloves is for everybody. It doesn't matter what fitness level you're on, we're all there for the same reason – to get fit and just have fun with it.”

Some students are unsure if taking a class at the Rec Center is for them. Kirila said she feels that some people can feel embarrassed about a lack of fitness or exercise experience, but she wants students to get out of their comfort zone and take a chance. The four new premium programs had demo weeks the first two weeks of the semester, and group classes are free all semester.

The Rec Center will hold its Fall Member Appreciation Week from Oct. 12 to Oct. 16, which includes giveaways, free food, prizes, and more. Kirila also mentioned the Viking Fit Fair on Nov. 12 where there will be seven stations testing health levels and comparing them to the national average in things such as body mass index, blood pressure, and blood sugar.

“My main goal is to get people turned onto exercise before they leave here.” Kirila said. “If you don’t start now, your chances of starting later lessen every year. So if you make it a habit now, you’re more likely to make fitness what it should be – a lifestyle.”



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