By: Alexa Mandes

Obesity has become a growing problem for Americans, as most people know. It is the second leading cause of death in America, only second to cigarette smoking. Studies are not usually done on college-age groups, that is, until recently. It is a known concern that children of today are becoming more overweight and as for college students, it is also a growing crisis. According to research from the University of New Hampshire from 2007, the age-group of 18- to 24 -year -olds have an increase risk of chronic health disease, which may lead to high blood pressure and an increased risk of coronary heart disease and other diseases related to plaque buildups in artery walls. Data was collected from 800 students attending the college. The results showed that one third of the students were either overweight or obese. The reasons behind this high number could be from the amount of stress students are under in college. They stress about their grades, deadlines, money, and fitting in time for socializing. With so many fast-food restaurants everywhere, it is sometimes just easier to grab and eat, while continuing to study.

But at Camden County College, there is a solution. The school offers many gym electives that are fun and very beneficial. The best part is that the student can feel like it’s a class, making sure that they attend and receive 1-3 credits for it. This way if a student is concerned about lack of time to exercise or feeling that they are anxious about beginning and learning an exercise routine, these classes will make it easier on them.

The classes offered range from personal fitness to swimming to Hatha yoga. Dean Derman is the professor of the wellspring fitness lab at CCC. He says that weight training is most beneficial to college students, “because it promotes a healthy life style that can be practice though their life to help ward off a number of life style aliments like obesity.”  In this course, the student would have an individual fitness evaluation, computerized analysis of results, and a prescribed exercise program.

Ronnie Hartman took the wellspring fitness lab class with Professor Derman last semester. “I really liked this class. It taught me a routine that was specific to me, my weight, and my abilities. It also pushed me to work out twice a week in order to get a good grade.”

For those students that want to go a less conventional way of exercising, an introduction to holistic practices class is offered. This class involves the philosophy of holistic health, which emphasizes the unity of mind, spirit, and body. Positive wellness involves a large part of this course. The student will be learning to take charge of their health by many different directions in this course. Another course available is Hatha yoga. This includes physical and mental disciplines that aim to balance different energy flows within the body through a variety of stretching exercise yoga positions.

Whatever gym class you choose, just choose one! Get into the habit of exercising today and don’t pay for the health consequences of tomorrow. There are great professors and interesting choices at CCC that can work for any student. Don’t become a part of the one third of overweight or obese college student statistic. You can start here at Camden County.

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