By MMS PE teacher & Director of Wellness Program Morgan School District (MSD) employees had an opportunity this year to be involved in a new wellness program. A wellness committee was formed last year before school started to decide how to motivate the employees to incorporate healthy habits into their life. The committee decided to adopt a similar program developed by the Wasatch School District. The name of the program is Seven Steps in Seven Months: Healthier Habits = Healthier You. The goal of the committee for this year was to unite and encourage the employees of Morgan School District to improve overall health and wellness. The Seven Step Program is a wellness building program. Each month a different wellness theme and goal was introduced. An additional step was added each month while continuing to incorporate the past wellness steps. The seven themes were: aerobic fitness, nutrition, stress reduction, organization & time management, strength training & stretching, sleep, and disease prevention, which incorporated all domains of health and wellness. Incentive prizes were given to those employees who tracked and met the wellness goal of the month. Physical activity classes were scheduled throughout the school year such as aerobics, yoga, Pilates, kickboxing, and Zumba. Gyms were opened for the employees to exercise, classes were held on the different themes with different guest speakers, employees were setting goals for better health and colleagues were supporting and encouraging each other in their efforts. A walking challenge was introduced in November for additional movement opportunities. Teams were established and the walking competition component included keeping track of steps per week and the team who walked the most steps in an eight week period won prizes. We had three walking challenges and the most steps walked by a group in the eight week period were 939,503. The MSD employees were excited about the program when it first started in October, but they are excited in a different way now because they see the results of setting wellness goals, working on them, and following through with incorporating healthy habits in their life. The MSD employees are looking forward to the wellness program continuing throughout the years, because we have discovered that preventative maintenance is the best medicine.
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