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News & Views of Phillips Since 1976
Monday May 27th 2024

Insights of Running Wolf

By Connie Norman, Running Wolf Manager

This month from Running Wolf Fitness Center, we want to share our great collaboration with the Center School students who are currently coming 3 times weekly to Running Wolf.

Center School (Na-way-ee) school is located on the 2400 block of Bloomington Avenue; Center School has been educating Native American youth for 40 years. Na-way-ee means “The Center”. The Center School is one of only four alternative or charter schools focusing on Native American education. Of those four, they are the oldest and the only one located in Phillips neighborhood, the heart of the Native American Community. This year, Center School has enrolled about 50 young people in grades 7-12. Most of the youth come from the immediate Phillips neighborhood. Typically, students at Center School have encountered difficulties at public school. Many of them have dropped out or lost credits because of poor attendance. Center School provides a fresh start with small classes and a culturally focused curriculum and now we are excited that Running Wolf is a part of their program offerings to these students!

Joe Rice, The Center School Director, stated “Center School places a huge emphasis on the Physical, Mental, Spiritual and Emotional health of our students and Staff. We know that a healthy, welcoming environment is essential not only for academic success, but also for health initiatives such as diabetes and pregnancy prevention, which are key components of our overall school program. Because of our collaboration with RWFC our students have access to a gym, fitness center and fitness trainer for the first time in our history.  This is a huge benefit to our students, most of whom have rarely had such opportunities in their lives, providing them with the opportunity to exercise regularly in a structured environment and to develop healthy exercise and diet habits, thereby addressing the two modifiable risk factors for Diabetes. (Diet and lifestyle) The self discipline involved also leads to better decision making in other parts of their lives and can therefore impact their sexual behaviors/choices as well.”

Some comments from the students are:

We really like Q (the trainer) he is awesome! (all students agree)

“My arms are better more toned and muscular”-Jose Garcia

“More toned and physically fit”- Vincent Skinaway

“I got bigger muscles and I have a 6 pack now” Matthew Skinaway

Crystal Pelchat, Health teacher at Center school stated, “It”'s great to see the changes in the students even when we are driving over to RWFC and on the way back. The energy of the students change, not just physically, but emotionally and their mentality is more positive. I see positive attitudes, students encouraging and helping one another and a real sense of community. Also several students have reported significant weight loss; they are tracking that back at Center School.”

Q-Equella Oliver  (Trainer at Running Wolf) comments- “In January the students from Center School started coming to Running Wolf to begin a fitness program. When they first came, they seemed uncomfortable, not interested or motivated. But after a few times here at Running Wolf they have become excited to be at Running Wolf. They are happy and enthused to work out! Their attitude about fitness has become a positive one, to the point that when they arrive at Running Wolf, they start on their own with their programs. I love working with them and often call them-My kids from Center School.”

Currently, Center School has only funding for memberships for 8 students to attend at a time. So to attend they must sign up and must be current in their class work and attendance to come to Running Wolf to exercise, three times a week. It is our hope that there can be funding enough for all the students to attend and to encourage their families to join them at Running Wolf. They come 3 days a week for 1 hour and work with the personal trainer in the fitness area with the weight and cardio machines. Also once a week they have access to a class called Functional strength. They also get nutrition information and encouragement from the Center School and Running Wolf staff. We have seen positive attitudes in these students. They are eager to come to Running Wolf and are also checking online at school about healthy exercise programs on their own. This shows their motivation to be healthy.

For more information on Running Wolf Fitness Center-please call (612)872-2388!

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Reader Feedback

One Response to “Insights of Running Wolf”

  1. Becky F says:

    I am anxiously awaiting a book written by Sue Hunter Weir about her research findings of the lives of the people in the cemetary. Does he have anything in the works?

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