2012-07-06 / Community

Rockaway Walks 2012 Kickoff - A Lifestyle Change Program

We all need to stay ready or get ready because Rockaway Walks is in session for another 12 weeks. The sixth annual kickoff took place June 23 and the program will run every Saturday, 8 a.m., on Beach 19 Street for the entire summer until September 11. Over the next 12 weeks participants who attend Rockaway Walks will take part in a “Healthy Lifestyle Change Program” (1hour free, supervised), an exercise, fitness and wellness program. Successful outcomes will be measured by program attendance (sessions attended divided by the number of sessions offered). The 12 weeks have three stages of physical development (exploration, adaptation, and overload) that progress every four weeks in learning objectives, cover five components of Health and Fitness (Review The Wave article on Exercise to Improve Flexibility, Strength and Endurance). Example, the first four weeks focus on strengthening and conditioning for Activities of Daily Living and recreation (30-60 minutes of moderate intense activities where participants learn about measuring intensity). During the first four weeks the foundation for exercise prescription will follow the guidelines of the American College of Sports Medicine. Participants will be encouraged to exercise in addition three hours per week (about 30 minutes per day) within their target heart rate zone or perceived exertion levels and to perform strength-training activities two times per week. Everyone will be able to measure and understand ones individual target heart rate at 50 percent to 80 percent of their maximal heart rate achieved during the baseline exercise test using the Karvonen formula (worksheets, handouts and Internet will reinforce learning).

In addition everyone who attends will be able to gain new knowledge about diet and daily Estimated Energy Requirement (EER) for best practices in weight management. Plus, know the difference between Fat and Muscle.

Transitioning into weeks 5 through 8 will focus on coordination and balance (stress management) practices that include gentle yoga poses, progressive muscle relaxation, breathing exercises, meditation, and guided imagery (Review The Wave article, Pain Management: Listen to Your Body). Everyone is expected to practice stress management techniques (positive self talk “Yes I Can”) for 1 hour or more per day at one’s own leisure.

During the final four weeks the focus is on task specific and putting it all together providing social support to facilitate adherence to a Healthy Lifestyle Change program. This is achieved by using communication skills to promote intimacy and expression of feeling in a supportive environment. Also, extended support services are provided by Co-sponsor St. John’s Episcopal Hospital and Joseph Addabbo Health Center.

The purpose of the Rockaway Walks program is to promote the need for health and fitness to determine new methods and strategies to stay mentally, physically and socially active and reduce health disparities. This is accomplished through literacy in health, nutrition and staying physically active. The short term goal of the program is to facilitate physical activity to maintain and improve self worth and improve community health through partnering with St. John’s Episcopal Hospital. The long-term goal is to align the program with the American College of Sports Medicine and Healthy People 2020 objectives for daily physical activity. In addition, expand the program to outreach to more adults and adolescents to promote lifelong learning in balancing health, fitness and nutrition. Rockaway Walks is in its sixth season, with instructor Steven C. McCartney, IPO HSW, MS, co-founder; all fitness levels welcome.

This year sponsors Councilman James Sanders Jr.; Healthy Lifestyle Changes, Inc.; St. John’s Episcopal Hospital; Joseph Addabbo Health Center; Modell’s Sporting Good; The Wave newspaper; Stop n Shop; CUNY (USS), York College; NYC Parks and Recreation; and the Department of Environmental Protection. For questions and concerns contact steven_ mcartney@walkprograms.com.



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