The media center at East Central Elementary was full of positive energy Wednesday afternoon, October 20, as teachers were presented with an opportunity, through Shift Therapy & Wellness, that would help implement healthy movement and exercise into their daily routine.
Representatives from Shift (a local physical therapy practice) spoke to EC third grade teachers on Wednesday, about the importance of movement and exercise as it pertains to stress relief, improving psychological resilience, and immunity. “Movement is medicine,” they told the group.
Shift is offering EC teachers a six week program (three days a week) of movement and exercise, accompanied by sidebar lessons on sleep, nutrition, and stress. The program has been offered to the teachers at no cost.
EC Principal, Dr. Wesley Styles said that this opportunity coincides with the kickoff of the annual Get Fit EC! Fundraiser. He said that the administration felt compelled to kick off something for the staff as well.
Styles stressed that the program is not about losing weight, but focused, instead, on improving health, feeling better, and empowering teachers to feel emotionally ready to show up for students. He asserted that the initiative is significant to him on an experiential level, given that his dissertation for his doctorate focused on teachers learning emotional resilience.
“The benefits of being active are huge for mental health, wellbeing, and stress management,” He said. “The bottom line is, increased stress leads to increased burnout, which leads to increased turnover. None of those things are good for the students or the teachers. So we’re just trying to find things for our staff to help reduce that stress and help them have a more enjoyable, active lifestyle.”