Wellness Day to promote UK’s health programs

By Rick Londberg

UK employees who want to start exercising have an alternative to buying a fitness video or joining a class with students at the Johnson Center.

UK’s Health & Wellness Program will host Wellness Day 2007 tomorrow from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Alumni Gym to showcase its programs and promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to UK employees.

“Wellness Day is our holiday gift to the university to increase health and wellness throughout the staff as whole,” UK wellness coordinator Carrie Davidson said.

This is the first Wellness Day at UK, but Davidson said she hoped it would become an annual affair.

Davidson sees it as a one-stop shop for those interested in health and nutrition on campus, where people can enroll in many of the programs offered, such as Body Shop Fitness, Biggest Blue Loser 2008 and Weight Loss Matters. The people who run these programs will be on hand throughout the day to answer questions about nutrition, fitness and relaxation, Davidson said.

A demonstration of Zumba dance, a current fad in fitness, will begin at noon.

While it is difficult to predict how many people might attend, Davidson said she expects at least 150 faculty and staff to pass through during the day, but hopes many more will attend. She said the event was important to the university because of all the positive effects of health awareness and exercise.

Wellness Day is sponsored by UK’s employee benefits package, so it is available to all UK employees, retirees, spouses and sponsored dependents.

Carol Watson, a health and wellness administrative support associate, said the event should grab the attention of those who are not currently enrolled in wellness programs.

“Joining is only $20 a semester — it’s so affordable,” Watson said. “We care about our participants, and our goal is to improve the health of all of the faculty and staff at the university.”

“It’s a comfortable atmosphere and we want it to be just that for everyone who comes in,” she said.

The Health and Wellness Program will be providing free refreshments, and prizes will be awarded throughout the day.