Health, Physical Education and Sports Sciences Department to Unveil New Exercise Laboratory
JONESBORO – Students, faculty and staff at Arkansas State University have a new opportunity (and one less excuse) to get more physically fit.
A new cardiovascular training facility in the Department of Health, Physical Education, and Sports Sciences formally will open Monday, March 17, during a 4-5 p.m. open house. The facility is in room 102 of the HPESS Complex.
The department developed the lab in response to the needs of exercise science majors who work with clients on campus in preparation for their careers after graduation.
The need for this equipment has been growing, according to Dr. Marla Jones, professor of exercise science.
“The exercise science undergraduate program has doubled in size in the past five years. We have approximately 60 senior exercise science students who are finishing their final semester,” she explained. “As the program has grown, so has our need for this equipment to conduct laboratory assessments in classes such as ‘Techniques of Physiological Fitness Assessment,’ as well as for our personal training program, which is implemented in the pre-internship class.”
She was referring to a capstone class for undergraduate exercise science majors, “Pre-Internship in Exercise Science,” which they take during the spring semester of their senior year.
“During this class, they provide personal training to A-State faculty, staff and students,” Jones said. “Gyms today have the latest equipment for trainers and clients to use, and we felt it was essential for our students to have access to this same caliber of equipment for training their clients in our personal training program.”
The new lab has several pieces of cardiovascular training equipment, including four recumbent bicycles, six elliptical machines,11 treadmills, and five step machines.
Jones currently teaches two sections of this class, with 30 students apiece. Each of these student trainers has one or two clients with whom he or she works with each Monday, Wednesday and Friday during their class time, either 11 a.m. or 12 noon.
“These students are not only learning but providing a service to the university through this class,” Jones added. “We have approximately 80 people who are being trained by the senior exercise science students this spring. This new facility and equipment are not only allowing students to learn, but they are also allowing A-State’s faculty, staff and students to improve their health and potentially lower their risk for hypokinetic diseases.”
She expressed appreciation to Dr. Thilla Sivakumaran, dean of the College of Education and Behavioral Science, and Dr. Jim Stillwell, HPESS Department chair, for making the new cardio lab a priority.
“The students, our clients, and I are thrilled we have that wonderful lab,” Jones added.
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