Active for Life, From the health and wellness experts at IU  

Instilling outdoor appreciation

Involving children in outdoor activities early and often increases the chance that as adults they will pursue outdoor-oriented careers and make environmentally-sensitive choices, such as choosing to recycle or buying fuel-efficient vehicles. Doug Knapp, associate professor in Indiana University's Department of Recreation and Park Administration, said the outdoor experience does not need to be rough and rugged -- just fun. His research consistently finds that visitors enjoy their park experiences more when the park has features tied to their interests and hobbies, such as museums, petroglyphs, special demonstrations or family-oriented educational programs geared toward helping kids get involved in park exploration. Knapp offers his suggestions for planting the seeds of environmental appreciation.  Full Story

 Outrun the sun

After losing her father and a close friend to melanoma, IUPUI employee Anita Day was determined to spread the word about this deadly form of cancer. Her organization, Outrun the Sun, is the only nonprofit group in Indiana dedicated solely to melanoma awareness and medical research. Through an annual run/walk event -- held in the evening in keeping with the message about sun exposure -- organizers are able to raise nearly $60,000 for melanoma research. "Our message is be safe, be smart -- it's your health you're dealing with," Day said. "There are a lot of people who want to be tanned. If you have ever seen someone lose a life to a tan, you wouldn't want another tan. It's not worth your life."

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 Choosing a swim instruction program for your child

Sometimes the best intentions can lead to shortcomings in a swim instruction program, said Annie Eakin, assistant director of aquatics in IU Bloomington's Division of Recreational Sports. Problems like overcrowding, long classes and too much interference from parents can detract from a positive pool experience. Eakin offered suggestions on finding a safe and fun swim instruction program for your child.

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 Slow Food

"For me, Slow Food is a way to cook and eat attentively and spirtitually, rooted in a deep respect for the food, for my companions and for the earth," writes IU Bloomington Political Science professor Christine Barbour, founding member and co-director of Slow Food Bloomington, an organization that supports local farmers, artisan producers and a mindful approach to eating.

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 Workout Makeover: Slow but steady progress

"Like the rest of the world, I want to improve faster," writes IU Bloomington staffer Nicole Roales, our Workout Makeover participant. "Not receiving instant results can be very discouraging when you're working hard and making changes. My mind knows results won't happen fast, but at the same time it still wants to see muscles change and flexibility improve."

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 BLOG: The mighty pedometer

Blogger Elisabeth Andrews writes, "I once scoffed at the humble pedometer. What does a fitness enthusiast like me gain from counting steps? I have run marathons, trained athletes and taught yoga to freshmen -- I am tough. But now I have come to believe that this simplest of health devices may be the most powerful tool for change on the market. "

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 Previous Issue, May 9, 2006

Follow this link to the previous issue of Active for Life, including a powerlifting champion on the IU Bloomington faculty, managing chronic pain, an IU Kokomo student who performs in World Wresting Entertainment events and how a workout makeover helps an IU Bloomington staffer overcome her fear of the weight room.

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