FlashLite promotes healthy lifestyles

The Kent State Student Recreation and Wellness Center offers many activities to promote a healthy lifestyle and physical fitness, seen here during a climbing competition, Feb. 23, 2013. FILE.

Hannah Reed

Students have the opportunity to spend a month learning how to develop a healthy lifestyle this summer with a new program called flashLITE.

The program will run from July 6 to Aug. 1 and is open to all Kent State students. John Gunstad, director of the event and associate professor of psychology on campus, said nothing quite like this program has ever been done before.

“For basically the month of July, students will come on campus, they will live in one of the residence halls and they’ll have a chance to take two specialized courses on being healthy,” Gunstad said. “They will have the chance to work with personal trainers, and they’ll have the chance to learn all about the resources Kent State has.”

According to the program’s website, standard summer tuition and room and board rates will apply.

Gunstad said flashLITE differs from other programs because it focuses on all aspects of a healthy lifestyle.

“There are so many programs out there where individuals get so hung up on focusing on just one part of a person,” Gunstad said. “Our thought is to work and interact with all parts of a person. We provide an integrated comprehensive lifestyle intervention for these students.”

Gunstad said the program will teach students how to be healthy for years to come.

“The goal for something like this is to know that excess weight or obesity is not only bad for us now, but it will be even worse in coming years,” Gunstad said. “What we are hoping to be able to do is change that course for them. They are going to learn good diets and good nutritional habits in a way that they can benefit them for the rest of their life.”

Junior nutrition major Paige Disbrow said she agrees it is important to learn these behaviors at an early age.

“It’s important to learn how to be healthy so you can live longer and be happier,” Disbrow said. “Exercise and a healthy diet both decrease risks of many chronic diseases.”

The program is also meant to add a sense of community for students.

“Learning how to eat right and be active can also motivate people around you to do the same,” Disbrow said.

Gunstad added that the main focus of the program is to be an enjoyable experience for students and a way to give them more opportunities.

“The students who enroll will have a lot of fun,” Gunstad said. “They’ll have a chance to learn a lot of new information that will be helpful, both now and in the future. It’ll also be a chance to meet brand new people that will be, most likely, friends for life.”     

Gunstad said he has high hopes for the program.    

“All the pieces were here; we just had to put them all together,” Gunstad said. “The thought is that we can do this, so let’s give it a try and see what happens.”

Contact Hannah Reed at [email protected].