Goooood morning! I hope you’re awake, because you’ve got some acronyms comin’ at ya.
Yesterday was my first day working with Wellness Wednesdays, an initiative of the First Line Schools in New Orleans. FLS is the same group of schools that has Edible School Yard, so I’ve had an excellent introduction to their values over the past week. The way WW works is that instructors from the Reily Center travel to Clark, and teach one class at 4:00 for the students, and another class at 6:00 for the faculty of FLS.
When I got to the school, I was informed that Clark just recently joined FLS, and that previously it had been one of the worst schools in the state – low test scores, school violence to the point that there was a documentary made about it, etc. But now, with all of the staff involved in making FLS ideal places to go to school, things are changing and this wellness initiative is just one bit of evidence of that. I was told that the earlier class is required for scholar athletes, as a way to introduce them to all different forms of exercise. I love that! With gym memberships so expensive these days, a lot of these kids wouldn’t get the opportunity to try out some of these classes. It’s a great way to inspire a love of fitness and contribute to a life long appreciation for physical activity.
As it turns out, yesterday was open house for the parents of Clark kids, so most of the faculty was wrapped up with that. However, one woman did come to my class (probably just so that I wouldn’t become discouraged with the initiative). Turns out, she’s the cross country coach and we had a ton of things to talk about! It’s usually kind of awkward when only one person shows up to a group fitness class, because you have to all of a sudden switch gears from using the energy of the group to push everyone to work hard to catering to one person’s needs. Two students actually joined in by the time we really got going though, which was cool. Here is what we did:
After the circuit, the school’s basketball coach asked if she could have the papers that I wrote the exercises on: “Always looking for something new to do!” That made me feel good. Even people who weren’t participating int he workout appreciated it! At the end of class, we did a push up ladder, where you do one push up then stand up, two push ups and stand up, three push ups and stand up, up to seven then back down. Following that, we did some planks: shoulder planks in the middle and on both sides, and elbow planks in the middle and on both sides for 30 seconds each.
It was a pretty solid workout, but will be way more fun when there is a whole group of people there to challenge each other.
ON A SIDE NOTE
Louie went to the park and playground on Tuesday and made two doggie friends without getting into any fights!! He also had a lot of fun with this stick: