Category Archives: Occupational
Occupational wellness is a journey that involves preparing and making use of your gifts, skills, and talents in order to gain purpose, happiness, and enrichment in your life. As you travel towards occupational wellness, choose a career that is consistent with your personal values, interests, and beliefs. On your journey, you will begin to value the importance of not only your own personal gratification, but also your contribution to the well-being of your co-workers. The choice of profession, job satisfaction, career ambitions, and job performance are all-important components to your path. By following your chosen course and developing the skills that will make you valuable, you are working towards total occupational wellness.
As a peer educator we get the opportunity to impact the lives of students to make a positive change in their life, or maybe just become more aware and knowledgeable about various topics.
Through this position I have learned SO much! From making presentations, brochures, handouts, and other types of flyers, to doing actual presentations in front of people, or at conferences; all these skills will help with my future endeavors. I have learned how to work in an office type space with multiple people, how to communicate ideas within a group, and planning for the “big picture”. When I applied for this job, I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but through hard work and dedication I really saw myself change and reflect what I was researching. Not only do we get the change to change students’ lives, but in the process our own lives may be changed too. I am so thankful to have been given this position, and I can’t wait to apply all this knowledge to my future career and lifestyle choices.
Things I have gained from this position:
- How to use the different Microsoft Office tools
- How to work within a unit or team of coworkers
- What it feels like to work in an office space/cubicle
- How to do effective research and prepare it for an audience
- What conferences are like at a college level (they’re really fun and informative, go to them!!)
If I could say something to future peers it would be this:
Take every opportunity you can! If there is a conference, go on it. If there is an event, do it! Be involved in your job, it is an amazing experience! You don’t realize what you have until its gone, appreciate your position and get the most out of it that you can. (:
Lexi Larson, Peer Educator Health & Wellness Hub
Are you one of those sitting a lot, not taking stretching breaks, constantly wearing a heavy backpack, or not exercising much? If yes, you may have noticed that back or neck pain has become a frequent guest. Even though you might be ignoring it, your body is actually trying to tell you something. It is time for you to start thinking about your posture when you sit, stand, sleep, and carry heavy backpacks or bags that might be weighing more than is healthy for your spine.
The danger is that if you keep ignoring the pain in your back and neck, your muscles will get strained or pulled and will stop supporting your spine correctly. Guess what- if your spine is not supported correctly, your vertebrae can get misaligned, nerves between the vertebrae can become pinched, and your brain will not be able to communicate with the body organs (how it usually does through the nervous system). This is not the news you want to hear about your spine and organs, right?
So how can you avoid the misalignment in your spine and say good-bye to the pain? There are a couple of good tips to consider:
- Exercise! Do it on a regular basis, not just weekends or when you have time. Exercise every day! Build up those back and neck muscles to help support the vertebrae and spinal ligaments.
- Maintain a healthy diet and weight. The less weight you are carrying around, the less stress you are putting on your back and neck joints and the less pain you will feel.
- Rest! Get a good night’s sleep every night, your muscles will be rejuvenated and ready for the next day.
- Relax! Take time to distress and become as stress free as possible; this will help those “knots” in your back.
- Keep good posture habits! Make sure that your back is straight, shoulders are squared, chin is up, chest is out, and stomach is in. If you can draw a straight line from your earlobe through your shoulder, hip, knee, to the middle of your ankle—–you’ve got it! To learn more about good posture, go to http://www.wikihow.com/Improve-Your-Posture
- When driving for long periods of time or sitting for extended hours, take stretch breaks, stand up and walk around at least once an hour.
- Avoid tucking the phone between your ear and shoulder and do not sleep on your stomach. This can cause stress and extra pressure on your cervical vertebrae and pinch nerves.
- Get lots of vitamin D and calcium. Your spine is made of bone so make sure you keep them strong!
- Lift with your knees bent, not from your back.
- Choose a well-padded backpack; wear it with both straps that are properly adjusted. It should weigh between 5-10 percent of your body weight- so keep excess items out of your bag!
Greetings UND Wellness Center members! My name is Matt McCreary and I am a senior majoring in Exercise Science and Wellness here at UND and I’m also a FLEX Intern at the Wellness Center for this Fall 2013 semester. FLEX stands for Future Leaders in Exercise and that’s exactly what I hope to be in the future. I’m hoping this internship provides useful insight into what I can expect in potential career opportunities while also helping to polish my skills as an effective communicator regarding health and wellness knowledge. My main responsibilities as a FLEX Intern are performing fitness assessments on members of the Wellness Center. This can range anywhere from getting skinfold measurements taken to a cardiovascular test on a treadmill. These are helpful tools for those of you who have health goals but maybe don’t know where to start. The fitness assessments are only a small fraction of services and activities offered at the Wellness Center.
Part of my process in becoming acclimated with the Wellness Center’s various offerings was to shadow one of the personal trainers and also to attend a Group Exercise (GX) class. I was fortunate to shadow Shawn, one of the personal trainers here at the Wellness Center, while he was with his client. Having a personal trainer that can help you reach your goals while also holding you accountable during the workout is the best of both worlds. These trainers understand that you want their help, and in return they put their best effort into developing a program that can meet your goals. They also are there to push you when things get tough, to motivate you feel like you want to quit, and to congratulate you when you complete your workout. I observed all three of these scenarios during Shawn’s and his client’s 75 minute session, and needless to say I was very impressed with the quality of work and effort from the two of them.
Another task I had to accomplish was to attend a GX class. Even though this is my 5th year at UND I never once attended a GX class prior to this internship. I attended the Power Cycling class offered on Saturdays at 11 in the morning. This was a new experience for me and shortly after it began a fun one at that. The class consisted of cycling at various speeds, resistance, and postures for 45 minutes. The class is set in the upstairs cycling room, fully equipped with a sound system, black lights, and a projector screen that plays music videos. Generally the rhythmic cycling that you do corresponds to the beat of the song playing, which provides the class with a little more entertainment than just staring at a blank wall in silence for 45 minutes. For me the biggest factor that got me working harder was the resistance on the bike. At first there is no resistance on the bike so pedaling is super easy, but as the class progresses the instructor will have you increase the resistance gradually. The resistance on the bike is altered a lot throughout the class which makes for a good change of pace in your cycling speed and thus your work output.
Overall this was a fun class and I recommend students and faculty take advantage of these free GX classes. There is something for everyone, whether you are super fit, a beginner, an early riser, a dance enthusiast, or a FLEX Intern. There’s plenty more to come in this blog so stay tuned for more insights.
- Matt McCreary