Lindsay Pressley, Communications Coordinator
Why is health and wellness important and why should students in grades 5 – 8 care about it? Students at Legacy Traditional School – Chandler received answers to these questions and many more as they attended a health and wellness fair on campus.
Leah Bruley, a PE teacher at Legacy – Chandler, and organizer of the event, invited eight medical and fitness professionals to speak with fifth through eighth-grade students. She explained the fair provides not only great activities for students, but also an excellent opportunity to promote awareness for health and wellness careers. “I’m so passionate about health and wellness, I just want kids to have a healthy lifestyle,” Bruley said.
Bruley proposed the idea of holding the wellness fair annually at Legacy – Chandler after seeing the success of this event held for the first time last year.
Students interacted with a wide variety of health professionals throughout the fair, spending seven minutes at each station asking questions before rotating to the next one.
The health and wellness fair presenters included a podiatrist from Cactus Foot & Ankle, representatives from Premier Orthodontics, a coach from Ignite Sports Performance, a nurse from Mayo Clinic and former Washington Redskins Player and Legacy – Chandler parent, Devin Clark.
Clark spoke to the students about discipline, perseverance and the importance of accepting guidance from others. “Make sure you listen to your teachers and coaches, they want to see you succeed,” Clark said.
Out of the eight presenters in attendance, five were parents of Legacy – Chandler students. “We are so lucky to have parents with such great careers,” Bruley said.
Legacy students were all smiles as they received souvenir bags from every health and wellness station and their laughter filled the room. They asked the presenters questions about everything from herniated discs to what types of food they should be eating. Students also participated in fun activities, including a version of ‘spin the wheel.’ During this game, students performed different amounts of various exercises, such as three burpees, depending on where the wheel landed.
In addition to coordinating the wellness fair, Bruley also conducts a Legacy wellness program for junior high students. Separate from Legacy’s Momentum physical education course, the curriculum is inspired by yoga, Tabata, core strength, ballet, barre, boot camp fitness, and nutrition. Bruley noted that the wellness program can be a powerful tool when trying to reach students who are less comfortable in the sports arena and want to be fit without being competitive.
Bruley stated that it is rewarding to see the results of the wellness fair and exciting to watch the students deeply invested in learning. “My favorite part is seeing the kids engaged and loving it.”