Research has shown that proper nutrition and cardiovascular exercise have a very positive impact on not only emotional well-being, but also brain functioning such as concentration, memory, focus and attention. Furthermore, there is a growing body of research that suggests regular cardio-vascular exercise can be more effective than medications in treating depression and anxiety.
Simply put, when we feel good physically we feel better emotionally, and we think more clearly.
We have implemented these findings into our programming at Solstice by including several interventions aimed at improving both the physical health of the young ladies we serve as well as the mental health. Soon after joining Solstice East, our students receive a fitness and nutritional assessment. Together with staff, students develop personal goals to get more active and eat better.
Fitness & Recreation for More Engaged and Active Minds
Knowing that there is a relationship between good physical health and good mental health, we offer ample opportunity for our students to be active in exciting ways while we offer encouragement every step of the way. This is part of our experiential learning focus.
Students will participate in regular workouts and will develop fitness goals aimed at improving their cardio-vascular fitness, strength, and flexibility. Our young girls participate in daily aerobic workouts which include running, biking, and aerobic classes. They also participate in other weekly workouts including Yoga, Pilates, Zumba, and boot camp.
The improvements in their physical condition will have immeasurable effects on their mood, self-esteem, and sense of self-efficacy. Our experiential learning focus is one of the aspects that separates us from other programs.
We Are What We Eat
It’s an old adage, but one that is still relevant today. We find many of our students eat diets high in sugar, sodium, and empty calories. This diet can lead to wild swings in energy levels, blood sugar, and often mood.
Early on, students complete a nutrition class where they are educated about healthy choices and the impact that their diet has on both their body and mind.
Students also share in meal planning and meal preparation to provide experiential learning opportunities and skills that can be utilized throughout life. With education, self-awareness and journal keeping, our young girls come to recognize the impact nutritional choices have on emotional state and mood changes. These “experiences” with nutrition have a lasting impact on our students as they develop a much improved sense of self-efficacy in managing how they feel and look, both physically and emotionally.
Developing Healthy Body Images
In addition to general nutrition classes, the girls also learn and practice Intuitive Eating. Intuitive eating is an approach that teaches people how to create a healthy relationship with food, mind and body. In short, our students become experts of their own body.
Exploration and Discovery on the Weekends
We are surrounded by a magnificent natural playground that we utilize as our classroom. These trips offer our students not only fun, but also a break from campus, and therapeutic opportunities as we see our new habits and skills practiced in different environments.
Learn more about the benefits and options of excursions off-campus. These off-campus excursions also include service and volunteer work, which are vital to students to seeing themselves as part of the larger world.