Air Force

November 1, 2013

HAWC offers updated ‘Be Well’ classes

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Rebecca Amber
Staff writer

Ken Ballard has been an exercise physiologist for 13 years. He teaches ìBe Wellî classes at the Health and Wellness Center as well as instruction for PT leaders.

For the last five years the Health and Wellness Center has offered “Be Well” classes intended to assist Airmen that have failed their physical training test. The old classes covered all aspects of physical fitness. Now, the center offers four class options that cater to the specific needs of the individual. If an Airman fails only one component of the physical†fitness test, they are only required to take a class in that particular area.

The new “Be Well” classes include the cardio clinic, which teaches proper running technique, push-ups and sit-ups, the weight class, for nutrition instruction and an online fitness option. The goal is to ensure that the classes are applicable to the person taking them.

While the classes are primarily intended for Airmen, they are open to anyone who is eligible to use the medical facilities on base and has access to the HAWC.

“[In the cardio clinic] I give them my philosophy on running and then I do get out and have them run.

That’s why some come in PT uniform,” said Ken Ballard, Exercise Physiologist at the HAWC.

Ballard also teaches a PT Leader Tier II class, which is a two-day training class for PT Leaders.

“The first day is just instruction then the next day is a lot of practical activity,” said Ballard.

“I take them to the pool and teach them to perform aquatic exercise which is something very unique here at Edwards.”

The swimming pools on base are open year-round and are a good source of fitness for people with lower extremity injuries or who are pregnant.

He also offers a general Aquatics class for instruction on proper use of the aquatic equipment and flotation devices such as the aqua jogger belt.

“It’s not where I shout out exercises and they do verbatim what I say, I show them how to use the equipment. Here at Edwards the aquatics staff is excellent, and unlike other bases, our pool stays open year-round until seven o’ clock at night,” said Ballard.

He added that aquatic exercise is a good form of rehabilitation for people with lower extremity injuries as well as pregnancy.

Ballard decided to become an exercise physiologist after his service in the Navy.

“I remember the exercises that were done [in the Navy] sometimes, just based on tradition and some of the traditional exercises could be harmful. For example, insisting on doing stretches to a cadence,” said Ballard. “I was also in Naval Special Warfare, which has been traditionally high levels of fitness, but I found some of the exercise routines have been bad. I was motivated to get my exercise degree from Fresno State so that I could come back to the military and develop much better programs based on research that has shown to be effective.”

Since that time he has dedicated 13 years to aiding service members in proper fitness routines.
For more information, contact the HAWC at (661) 275-HAWC.




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