The need for parents, teachers and staff of Corona Secondary School, Agbara to imbibe healthy lifestyles by eating healthy diets, observing regular exercises and going for regular medical check-ups was emghasised at the maiden Health and Fitness Week, organised recently at the school premises. The school also unveiled a new fitness centre. Sunday Ehigiator reports
The place of healthy living among people cannot be over-emphasised just as regular exercise plays a key role in combating diseases and mental health in human endeavours. It was against this backdrop that Corona Secondary School, Agbara, Ogun State recently propagated its gospel beyond the four walls of classrooms, as it organised its maiden fitness event with the theme ‘Health and Fitness Week’, which was attended and observed by parents, staff and students of the school. The occasion was used to open a new gym house for teachers and staff of the school.
The week-long event, which began on October 6, 2019, had both internal and external fitness trainers taking participants through a set of routine aerobic exercises on the open field of the school, before sunrise, on each of the days. Even as some other participants sweat it out at the school’s gym centres.
Speaking with THISDAY, the Principal, Mrs. Chinedum Oluwadamilola said “health is paramount. We at Corona want children to do well in their examinations, as well as grow up as responsible adults in a healthy body.
“Exercise and fitness have been known to pump oxygen into the brain so that brain cells can function very well, and it is also good to start having healthy feeding habits, regular exercise, very early in life.
“And there is no better way to start it than in school. This shouldn’t be confused with sports because it is not about sports, it is just to exercise the body and that is important to us. When we were young, we played outside. In today’s world, and with children from certain economic demographics, they stay indoors, get out from an air conditioned home into an air conditioned car, and hardly do any physical exercise. None of them is trekking to school, or trekking to market or running errands by just walking a distance. And it is not just the children from higher economic demographics. When we were young, there were no tricycles and motorcycles.
“Hence, not only are we promoting it, we want it to be a culture, and this culture should be also from home that is why we are involving the parents. So you can see that they came in their fitness attire, and we urged them to bring healthier options of meal, which they all did. “And as you know, a healthy body would beget a healthy mind,” she said.
Oluwadamilola added that academics have to do with the mind and if the body is weak, sluggish, deceased in some cases, a child will not be able to do anything.
On the importance of exercise, she said: “Exercise helps with sleep for instance, going to bed and not being able to sleep, a child is not going to get to class the next morning and be able to listen, study, or assimilate properly. So we expect a habit of exercise on a daily basis would improve sleep which is proven by research and that would transform to the child’s brain by making him able to assimilate properly and being at alert.
“This exercise, though our maiden, would be held every term and will be incorporated in all the three terms,” she said advised parents to integrate it as part of their children’s routine after school.
Also speaking with THISDAY, the guest speaker and a parent, Dr. Afonume Okwe said the essence of the week was to make the children, parents and staff to imbibe the culture and the lifestyle of staying fit and healthy
According to her, the benefits of exercise include helping to control weight; it helps to curtail a lot of diseases like breast cancer and all other forms of cancers. “And if you are a diabetic patient, it also helps you better manage your blood sugar.
“Aside exercise, 80 per cent of your weight and being healthy is actually tied to your diet and you cannot exercise a bad diet. Hence, if you are not eating right, no matter how much you exercise, you are still going to be unhealthy.”
At the official launch of the fitness centre, the PTA Chairman, Olusola Falodun said: “It is also to encourage them to embrace the fact that living healthy should be a way of life. We all want to live long and be able to witness some events in our lives as we grow old.
“Basically, a healthy individual would be productive and for the teachers and staff, if their productivity is improved as a result of living healthy, we would see the effects on the performance of our children, both in academics and in extracurricular activities.
“So there are three things I would like to emphasis as a recommendation to all parents and teachers. One is to ensure that they check their blood pressure regularly, Secondly, they should endeavor to go for regular medical checkups in the clinics, at least, once a year. And lastly, they should reduce the consumption of red meat. If they can do these three things, it would go a long way in improving their lifestyles.
An ex-student, who doubles as a fitness trainer, Mr. Seun Fadina also spoke to the student about benefits of water to the body and the need to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
“Water helps you in a lot of ways. When you take water first thing in the morning, it helps you keep hydrated through the day and you should drink more as the day goes by. It helps your heart and general immune system to work properly. So even if you still would be exercising which also has several benefits, taking moderate quantity of water before exercise is very good for the body.
On the benefits of regular exercise, he said: “It is good for your heart and lungs. It improves your muscular fitness and making you confident. But for me, wellness and fitness is really not all about physicality, there is an internal effect you have to know. The same way you take supplements and they start to work first from the inside, before being evident on the outside that is how benefits of exercise and living healthy also start from the inside.
“However, everything you do in life should be about moderation, even healthy diets could cause issues in your body system if it is abused. And exercise is to the body just as petrol is to car.”
Fadina admonished the student to maximize the week-long health and fitness week, even as they endeavor to drink water regularly and stay free of preserved foods.
Sharing her thoughts with THISDAY on how impactful the exercise has been to her after the day’s aerobic exercise, a student, Fayobomi Olusola-Falodun said “I feel good and refreshed. Exercise is very good for everyone; it is very refreshing and nice. And being the maiden edition, it is very welcoming and should be sustained. I would advise all students to take advantage of this week to drink a lot of water, fruits, eat healthy, sleep well, and exercise every day.
Another student, Willabelle Iribhogbe said: “It feels really good to have participated in this exercise. I feel like, if I should write a test now, I will score all As. My mind is open and I feel happier. I would advise that this exercise should be made more constant for us, even after the week. I mean aside our sports days, a day should be dedicated for health and fitness every week. I will advise my co-students to maximize the facilities that the school has provided for us. It is really going to help them in their studies and general wellbeing,” she stated.