he Gustavus Health Fitness majors are looking to promote the Human Performance Lab (HPL) as a resource for both students and faculty on campus. The HPL is located in Lund Center, and its services are available to all students and faculty free of charge. The HPL can be used as a tool for individuals to help measure their fitness levels, and for assistance from Health Fitness majors, who are generally seniors specially trained in the field.
“The HPL offers a wide variety of services such as full fitness assessments to determine physical ability as far as strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular endurance. We do resting heart rate, blood pressure, BMI (Body Mass Index), girth and other measurements, as well,” Senior Health Fitness Major Natalie Goffin said.
Senior Health Fitness Major Janelle Derbique stresses the importance of a workout routine embedded into a college student’s schedule.
“Especially in college, I think having physical activity in your week is really important, because it relieves stress. It’s one of the best anti-depressants you can have,” Derbique said.
Goffin adds that besides acting as a stress-reliever, an active lifestyle is proven to be beneficial for one’s health.
“There is a lot of evidence supporting the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, and it really can’t be stressed enough. Being physically active can reduce the risk of many cardiovascular and other diseases. Many people think that it takes a significant amount of time on a treadmill or hours in a gym each day to actually make a difference, but simply getting out and walking every day can improve the heart’s function, and in turn years of life,” Goffin said.
Senior Health Fitness Major Olivia Johnson says that the Human Performance Lab is a great resource for students and faculty who currently lack a workout routine, or for those who simply would like to mix up their workouts.
“We’ll give you recommendations and just try to help you spice up your workouts. If you’re wanting to see where you’re at, or looking for ways to do things differently we’re fully capable of giving advice and coming up with things that way,” Johnson said.
Derbique agrees and says she also believes the Human Performance Lab is a great way for students and faculty to track their progress.
“I think it would be a really good resource for students and faculty if they want to see results and just be able to know how they’re progressing with their physical health. I think it would be really cool if more students did utilize this center,” Derbique said.
For students or faculty who currently lack a stable workout routine, and are looking to start one, Goffin says the key is to make it a habit.
“My best advice is to just do it. Make gym appointments with yourself and treat them like a class, don’t skip. I believe what people fear most is not knowing what is most beneficial or what to do during their exercises, but the truth is any activity is beneficial,” Goffin said.
Derbique recommends starting slow, with both aerobic and resistance training.
“I would start three to five days a week, 30-60 minutes doing both resistance training, so weight lifting, and that can be the machines upstairs, or the weight room, or all of the functional equipment on the third floor; and then aerobic exercise. Just start out slow, working at a moderate intensity,” Derbique said.
To make an appointment in the Human Performance Lab, visit gustavus.edu/hes/hplab.