Rec Services hands out pedometers to encourage fitness

Brock University Recreation Services gave out free pedometers last week for “Walktober”, in order to raise awareness for an active lifestyle.

Students, staff and faculty members were encouraged to pick up one of the pedometers from the Walker Complex Welcome Desk and then tweet their total steps each day to @BrockRecService with the hashtag #Walktober. It was an awareness event to get people to see how many steps they take in a day and to make them aware how active they are.

“It’s a small, quick promotion to get people active,” said Eric Walter, Fitness Manager of Recreation Services. “It’s an inexpensive activity to engage people.”

“I think pedometers are cool to begin with,” said Scott Robertson, an MA student in Applied Health Sciences, who participated in Walktober. On October 30, he was already at 7,000.

Around 400 pedometers went out and from the people who tweeted their step count, prizes were given to two randomly selected winners. The small devices even had a personalized ‘Brock Badgers’ label.
Pedometers are, in fact, more interesting than they sound. Modern pedometers are generally partly electronic with a small metal pendulum attached to an electronic wiring circuit. In order to calculate a person’s step, the pedometer actually measures the swing of a person’s body as they move one leg forward. As a step is taken, the pendulum swings back and forth with the momentum of the step. With each swing, the pendulum closes the circuit to enable a flow of energy, which then registers as one step on the electronic dial of the pedometer.

Walktober is an iniative held all across the world to encourage people to get more active with something as simple as walking. At Brock, it ran two years ago but not last year due to understaffing issues. This year, Recreational Services decided to hold it for only one week instead of the whole month since Reading Week tends to interrupt participation.

For Walter, the key to a healthy lifestyle is to just start with something and then go from there.
“Anything is better than nothing,” said Walter. “I’m in here [the Zone] everyday and I see the fitness centre itself, but exercise and a healthy lifestyle don’t have to take place only in there. And if you do use these facilities, [a healthy lifestyle] needs to go beyond just these doors.”

Recreational Services is also involved with BUSU’s Wellness Week and occasionally offers free fitness classes to continue raising awareness and encourage people to get active. Next semester, they will be running a big initiative for their fitness programs. Students and staff are encouraged to join one or more of the variety of fitness and exercise classes offered and a big prize draw will be held for those who reach a certain minimum attendance.

Melanie Pfaeffli
Internal News Editor

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