Hickam HPARC offers new fitness opportunities for Airmen, Sailors

Jonathan Low, Hickam Human Performance and Rehabilitation Center exercise physiologist and personal trainer, uses gait analysis equipment to monitor a patient’s walk at the HPARC on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, Jan. 9, 2014. Low uses gait analysis hardware and software to assess, plan and treat individuals with injuries. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Terri Paden)


By Tech. Sgt. Terri Paden, 15th Wing Public Affairs

For many, the new rear brings resolve to "get in shape," try new diets or lose those last few pounds. While these fitness goals can sometimes come with costly gym memberships or personal trainers, Airmen and Sailors stationed at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam need look no further than the Human Performance and Rehabilitation Center here to meet their fitness needs.

Formerly the Health and Wellness Center, the HPARC seeks to promote good health and injury prevention through free educational classes and practical intervention.

"The agency works to meet the needs of the community by providing education on nutrition and weight control through exercise," said Dr. Crystal Nicholson-Springer, HPARC health educator. "For active-duty members, our courses strengthen performance targeting the core muscle groups that support tested motions needed for optimal performance on the PT test."

Nicholson-Springer said though the program has been operating on JBPH-H since 2007, modifications have been made and new classes have been added to ensure users have the greatest chance at reaching their fitness goals.

"These programs are designed to increase resiliency by improving the body's ability to handle stress, both physical and emotional, through healthy behaviors," said Jonathan Low, HPARC exercise physiologist and personal trainer.

According to Low, the idea behind HPARC programs are not just to become more fit but to do so in a way that prevents injury.

"We want to make people stronger and fit, but we want to do that by making sure they stay injury free," he said.

"It's about increasing performance. By providing injury prevention programs we ultimately increase performance because fewer injuries equal more gym time."

The iGet Fit, Warfighter Readiness and Superior Airman Fitness Enhancement programs are the new offerings all aimed at preparing Airmen to meet the newly implemented fitness testing standards, though not all of the classes are aimed at fit test improvement or active-duty members.

"We've found that participants see the most change when the environment at home is conducive to healthy changes, so we welcome service members and their families," said Low.

The Tobacco Cessation and iGet Fit programs are open to family members and spouses who are also seeking healthier lifestyles through proper nutrition and fitness.

"Even if you don't need PT test improvement, everyone could use injury prevention information or help leading a more healthy lifestyle overall," Low said. "There's a lot of good information and good programs out there. It's our job to balance information with practical application, so we interpret that information and figure out how to apply it."

For more information on the HPARC or to register for classes, contact the staff at 808-448-6170.


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