Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

January 15, 2016 at 9:05am

New MDS program helps airmen get in shape

An airman from the 62nd Medical Squadron, wearing his Garmin Connect fitness monitor, conducts push-ups Jan. 7, at the McChord Fitness Center, Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Photo credit: Staff Sgt. Katie Jackson

Email Blog Post Print Blog Post Share on Facebook Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon

Fitness and activity trackers, such as Fitbits and Garmin Connects, have been becoming very popular among those in the fitness industry, and have become a useful tool for individuals trying to lose weight.

These trackers have capabilities which include tracking physical activity and steps, heart rate, quality and quantity of sleep and provide tools to track food and water consumption.

To utilize these tools in conjunction with a health improvement program to help airmen who are not successful on their fitness examinations, Dr. Danielle Knutson, 62nd Medical Squadron health promotion coordinator, brought this program to McChord Field.

"This program helps support the Air Force Health Promotion Mission: health promotion will coordinate, evaluate, and promote installation-specific, evidence-based interventions that support healthy behavior change to optimize health and resilience in Air Force communities," said Knutson.

The program, led by Knutson, began in September 2014. So far, 125 airmen at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, have participated in the 90-day program, which is currently able to support 75 participants at one time.

"This program shows great potential. I'm currently conducting a literature review on activity trackers and behavior aspects to conduct a research project to help add to the gap in the research that is needed on activity trackers and their capabilities of helping individuals achieve their health and wellness goals," said Knutson.

Currently, the program is only offered to airmen who have not been successful on their fitness tests and airmen who are struggling to maintain fitness standards.

Airmen who are unsuccessful on their fitness tests are directed to sign up, and struggling airmen may request to sign up through their Unit Fitness Program Manager and commander for the mandatory BE WELL Health Improvement Program.

One of these airmen, Airman 1st Class Martavia Martin, 62nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron C-17 crew chief, has been very successful in achieving his fitness goals, thanks to this program.

"My goal was to lose five inches off my waist and I ended up losing six-and-a-half inches," said Martin.

In addition to losing six-and-a-half inches off his abdominal circumference measurement, he has lost more than 28 pounds, has successfully completed a fitness test, and would recommend the program to others struggling with their personal fitness.

"It keeps me active and moving a lot more. Whenever I see the red light (on my device), I know that I've been sitting too long," said Martin.

The physical fitness of each member of a unit is important when supporting a mission. In addition to Knutson, Martin's unit has encouraged him throughout his journey.

"My supervision and chain of command has had my back throughout the entire process. A lot of them gave me advice on different diets and workouts. They made it easier for me to go to PT," explained Martin. "They worked out with me and showed me different programs. They told me about their downfalls and the things that didn't work for them."

"Other squadrons and units are taking advantage of this technology and that is outstanding," said Knutson. "My advice is to utilize a person who can keep the fitness challenges fun and exciting but also utilize the JBLM services such as Performance Triad, Jensen Health and Wellness Center, 62nd MDS Health Promotions, BHOP, and Madigan Nutrition Clinic to help support the members' health and wellness goals."

For more information on this program at McChord Field, contact Dr. Danielle Knutson, 62nd Medical Squadron health promotion coordinator, at 253.982.6947.

comments powered by Disqus

Recent Comments

abigail said:

you are say about this Air Force highly recommends absolutely right and i appreciate your...

about Air Force highly recommends renters insurance

nurisahi juan said:

This is real take it serious, my name is marian i, who will believe that a herb can Cure...

about JBLM soldier completes ALS

Ken Beseau said:

Its always a treat to be able to get on base and all of the planes from around the world come...

about AMC Rodeo to have new life

Electrician Rochester NY said:

Thanks for giving us nice info. Fantastic walk-through. I appreciate this post.

about Don't be shocked: 446th electricians find the spark

thomas candey said:

way to go usaf soon will be flying a kc46 air craft made right here in everett wash.not france...