HKBU joins Kwong Wah Hospital to train obese adolescents to go for Marathon
10 Feb 2014
The Department of Physical Education of HKBU and paediatricians of Kwong Wah Hospital (KWH) jointly organised a six-month tailormade “Step Up!” Marathon Training Programme for overweight adolescents aged 16 to 20 to coach them to participate in the Hong Kong Marathon.
Among the 24 participants, 11 have hypertension. After the six-month training, 42 % of the participants had significant weight loss (average: 3.5 kg, the highest: 11.7 kg). All of them will attend the 10 km run of the Hong Kong Marathon to be held on 16 February, and they are confident that physical readiness, peer support and morale built up throughout the training will get them to the finish line.
The participants were trained by coaches and adapted to physical activities with kids of similar build. “Participants had regular sessions during which they gained knowledge of and skills in physical fitness, long distance running, sports sciences, nutrition, healthy lifestyle and team work. The programme focused on positive psychological development with the aim of developing participants’ self-discipline to enable them to exercise in the long run,” said Dr. Lobo Louie, Associate Professor of the Department of Physical Education, HKBU.
Dr. Lettie Leung, Consultant Paediatrician of KWH, said: “The programme adopts a creative and motivational approach, to achieve behavioural change through attitude change: that exercise is enjoyable and achievable for participants.”
Five undergraduate students of HKBU’s Department of Physical Education, Lo Suet, Lee Siu-tung, Tsang Tsz-hin, Chan Kai-wing and Fung Ho-yin, provided voluntary assistance to the programme. They led and trained the participants in running, supported and encouraged them, demonstrated positive thinking, and evaluated their progress. Participants not only gained knowledge and skills related to sports and running, but also developed the habit of exercising, a sense of responsibility and self-discipline.
Meanwhile, to ensure participants are physically ready for the challenge, physiotherapists and orthopaedic surgeons of KWH joined hands to provide the necessary support. They educated participants on injury prevention, assessed their foot type, and tailormade insoles for those who needed them. Pain problems that were affecting some participants were improved by training modification, physiotherapy, analgesia and rest.
The conditioning programme, which included strengthening exercises, stretching exercises and home cardio exercises were designed to prevent participants from injury, protect weight bearing joints, and relieve muscle tension before and after practice, and helped them adapt to the increase of heartbeat during running and improve their balance.