NVFC Hosts First Health and Fitness Advocate Workshop

Friday, 29 August 2008

The NVFC Heart-Healthy Firefighter Program held the first Health and Fitness Advocate Workshop on August 9-10 at the NVFC headquarters in Greenbelt, MD. Personnel from departments across the country attended the session to learn how to implement and maintain a health and fitness program within their department. The two-day workshop combines the foundations and principles behind a successful health and fitness program and incorporates hands-on training.

“We were very pleased with the inaugural Health and Fitness Advocate Workshop. The session was the first of two pilot programs for the Health and Fitness Advocate initiative this year, and we plan to expand the program next year to offer additional workshops,” said Maggie Wilson, NVFC Director of Health and Safety. “The feedback we received from attendees was very positive. Everyone was really enthusiastic about the lesson materials and the way it was presented. They left with the knowledge and motivation to really make a department-level program work.”

The workshop is designed to train first responders to become advocates within their departments, encouraging and motivating their fellow fire and emergency personnel to adopt heart-healthy behaviors. The instructors first teach attendees the basic foundations and principles relating to anatomy and physiology, kinesiology and biomechancis, motor learning and control, nutrition and healthy eating, and weight management. They then help attendees learn how to build a program for their departments, including the basics for establishing goals, strategies, and program components. The session ends with a demonstration of safe, basic strength exercises and drills that they could implement within their departments.

“What really turned out to be a great asset of the workshop was the discussion it generated among the attendees and instructors,” said Wilson. “Each person had valuable thoughts and insights that benefited the entire group as well as the Health and Fitness Advocate Program in general.”

A second Health and Fitness Advocate Workshop will take place in Greenbelt, MD, on September 20-21. Register today for this free workshop and become a Health and Fitness Advocate for your department. Stay tuned to the Heart-Healthy Firefighter web site at www.healthy-firefighter.org for information on future workshops.



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