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Healthy Clubs and Healthy Family

PATHE presents »Healthy story« from Sports Union of Slovenia and from Czech Sokol

Unhealthy lifestyles – which include un-activity, bad nutrition, insufficient exercise, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and stress – are greatly responsible for the occurrence of physiological risk factors (high blood pressure, high cholesterol and glucose levels, overweight, and obesity) as well as chronic diseases. Let's reflect on this, get rid of bad habits, and take responsibility for our health.

Some people exercise because they want to protect themselves from disease, while others do so because they are preparing for a marathon.



innovative and creative ways

Regular exercise is important for all of us. We have heard this a million times. But do we have a clear image of what this means for our body and health? We have already accepted the fact that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” This is why, in many societies, fitness centres and other sports organizations are cooperating with doctors and coaches from specific areas. They can help people chose an exercise program and improve their physical and psychological condition.

Increasing scientific research is revealing that physical activity, together with a healthy lifestyle, increases quality of life regardless of what age you start to be physically active. Of course you have to obey the rules of a healthy lifestyle, such as eating healthy food, moderate levels of alcohol, no smoking, and getting enough sleep. If these rules are not followed, physical activity can do more harm than good.

Iztok Retar from SUS, PATHE Project Associate Partner, says: »All activities in the field of healthy movement need to be carried out carefully and with feeling, the same goes for dealing with the participants. This can be ensured with properly qualified trainers who have the knowledge, the teaching skills and psycho-social abilities needed and who will also take into account the criteria of healthy lifestyle«. Sport Union of Slovenia (SUS) has developed a quality label “HEALTHY CLUB” for health directed movement and for exercise offers by the SUS members. The introduction of this label helps realise their efforts to ensure and offer quality and health beneficial exercise programs in sport societies and to constantly improve these programs.

Vladimir Dostal from Czeck Sokol, PATHE project Collaborating Partner, says: »With respect, not only to our geographic location in the centre of Europe, but also to the traditions and general popularity of some kinds of sports, the scale of activities of children and their parents is really wide. These activities include both those indoor – various kinds of gymnastics, games, dances – and outdoors, in nature; in summer-time learning to swim in nature and various other activities in summer camps, in winter-time all convenient ice and snow sports, mainly skating and skiing. The whole box of these activities we call “HEALTHY FAMILY”.

The “Healthy story” highlights some of the innovative and creative ways in which 2 National Sport for All Associations have joined forces to improve the healthy lifestyle, to promote of healthy habits, new ideas of a balance diet and regular physical activity, focusing on a positive and critical view of food and body movement.

Aim of the “Healthy Clubs” is to complete modernization and adaptation of physical activity programs with the goal of becoming the key support to contemporary active and kind to health lifestyle. To qualify a lifelong sports centre, recognizable in a local environment, which encourages and enables the execution of sports activities, which support the strengthening and keeping of good health. “We can reach that by using well thought-out activities adapted to customer needs and wishes about how to spend leisure time” says Iztok from SUS.

Prof. Jana Berdychova, a great innovator and propagator of the exercises of parents and children in Czech Sokol, showed the golden line for the development of the national project “Healthy Family” which support the main idea that “not only the child but also its parents are involved in the physical activities which is also a contribution to social development and strengthening of the relations in the family”. The idea of gathering kids and partners together in Healthy Family activities is that even more children, not the same age, in the family can practice with their parents in the respective lessons for parents and children. During the lessons the basic motion abilities like dexterity, flexibility, rapidity, or endurance, are developed,the children gradually acquire basic principles of different kinds of sports and are also taught to perceive music and its rhythm. The education of “children gymnasts” to sustaining attention is also significant. The children take advantage of the permanent presence of their adult partners who play the role of their trainers, who correct their activities according to the instructions of the leading trainer of the lesson. The parents can repeat and practice the acquired skills with the children also at home as both of them know those skills.

Vladimir Dostal, Secretary General from Czech Sokol, expresses his respect to the Healthy Family project with words: »Another parallel process which runs during the activities of parents with children and which the children manage quite well is the socialization. In one part of the lesson we try to free the child from depend on its partner and to amuse it separately under the leadership of one trainer while the adults shortly but intensively practice their fitness program. Meanwhile the children have leisure activities, e.g. the rhymes or fairy tales with small games. “

Both, SUS and Czech Sokol, found out that the most important in the associations/clubs is the quality of the trainer staff. All the mentioned activities can be run only under the leadership of specially educated trainers who lead the individuals and groups to the correct movement habits, to lead the parents to the safety assistance and the kids to have fun. The trainer must prevent development of muscle unbalance or over loading of some muscle groups. Therefore they all know that they have to develop and upgrade the system of education. All trainers must go through special educational courses where they acquire, from the experienced lecturers (physiotherapists, medical doctors and other specialists) knowledge from special health physical education, basic anatomy including the age specialties, further they manage the leadership of training process and acquire all other skills needed for quality work with a certain age category.

Sports Union of Slovenia and Czech SOKOL met on the PATHE Consultation meeting in May 2009 with the intention to create the “Bilateral agreement” for friendly cooperation primarily in the fields of mass, recreational and healthy sport. They have agreed upon the exchange of information about sport, social and cultural activities of both organisations. This mainly includes seminars, conferences, festivals, tournaments, etc., which are open to the public. They will exchange the knowledge on the local and national promotion and exercise programmes designed to strengthen and maintain health for all the members as well as practical help for each other and to look into the common »golden line«: »try to address health insurance companies regarding the possibility to be included into their health preventive programs as they fulfill the conditions for receiving the benefits from these preventive programs.”

Healthy Clubs and Healthy Family (PDF, 0.56 MB)