Health and Lifestyle

Mindfulness-Based Training Offered at UHealth Fitness and Wellness Center

The impact of chronic stress is one of the strongest factors in determining a person’s overall health and well-being. A growing body of scientific research suggests that mindfulness-based programs significantly benefit a wide range of participants, from those suffering with chronic pain and illness, to those with anxiety and depression. Among healthy or otherwise undiagnosed individuals who want to develop better coping strategies and improve their quality of life, participants in mindfulness-based intervention (MBI) programs report enhancements in variety of ways, including greater focus, joy, stress reduction, coping, and quality of life.

Mindfulness-based stress reduction is an experiential learning program, intended to engage the mind and the body. Based on the program developed in 1979 by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, mindfulness training teaches participants to recognize and address stressors by using a variety of meditation and yoga techniques. The program has received widespread international acclaim and is offered at leading integrative medical centers around the world. However, affordable mindfulness-based courses offered to the community by qualified facilitators have been limited in Miami.

Starting Saturdays, May 2 through June 20, from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and including a session on Thursday, June 18, from 6:30 to 8:45 p.m., an eight-week mindfulness program will be offered at the UHealth Fitness and Wellness Center by Debra Annane, M.A., M.P.H., R.Y.T. Debra Annane, a stress management researcher and group facilitator at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, trains at the Center for Mindfulness at University of Massachusetts. She has been a mindfulness meditation and yoga practitioner since 1987. Her warmth, knowledge of stress management and meditation training and public health research come together in a practical, effective, and comforting blend of self-healing techniques that she expertly imparts to program participants.

“The course and the practices are a walking trail into the garden of your life. It’s about seeing the whole picture—weeds, flowers, bugs, and all. When we pay attention to the exact and present moment now, just as it is, the next moment becomes a surprise. I enjoy guiding participants to develop a mindfulness practice that helps them be more fully present for simple every-day moments, just as much as for challenging times,” Annane said.

The eight-week program fee is $290 per person and includes all course materials. Full or partial scholarship may be granted to applicants who submit a written statement of need. For more information or to register for the upcoming class, call Debra Annane at 954-643-5397.


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UMindfulness Lecture with Zindel Segal: The Mindful Way Through Depression on April 7

Join UM’s Amishi Jha and the College of Arts and Sciences on Tuesday, April 7  at 5:30 p.m. for another stimulating UMindfulness lecture featuring Zindel Segal, Distinguished Professor of Psychology in Mood Disorders at the University of Toronto-Scarborough. His study of mindfulness meditation and anti-depressant medication has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, CNN Health Online, and The New York Times. The author of 10 books and more than 150 scientific publications, Segal’s latest publications, The Mindful Way Through Depression and The Mindful Way Workbook, are patient guides for dealing with stress and achieving balance in everyday life.

The lecture will be held at the Newman Alumni Center, 6200 San Amaro Drive, Coral Gables. To learn more, watch Segal’s TED talk. To RSVP for the lecture, click here.

The Mindful Way Through Depression and The Mindful Way Workbook will be on sale before and after the lecture.





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Register for the Herbert Wellness Center’s New ‘First Step Fitness’ Program

Special to UM News 

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (March 18, 2015) – Just in time for summer, the Patti and Allan Herbert Wellness Center is introducing a new fitness orientation program designed for new or current members who are looking for a way to jumpstart their workout program.

“First Step Fitness” is a six-week program that includes personal training sessions, body composition assessments, a customized workout routine, and nutritional resources. The program costs $210 for UM student members and $300 for non-student members.

“We designed a holistic program,” said Erik Rueckle, a UM senior studying health care management and exercise physiology. “First Step Fitness gives our newer members all the tools they need to stay on a successful workout plan even after the six-week program has ended.”

Rueckle and fellow Herbert Wellness Center personal trainers are paired with participants based on goals and availability. Participants receive six 30-minute personal training sessions once a week throughout the program. A BOD-POD is used before the program to calculate body-fat percentage and other fitness variables to get baseline measurements. After the program, another BOD-POD assessment is preformed to measure the results.

Participants also receive a customized, detailed workout plan that is a guide they can use during and after the program’s duration. General nutrition information, such as U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) guidelines and chosemyplate.gov resources, are also provided.

Nikki Reifschneider, assistant director of fitness and personal training at the Herbert Wellness Center, oversees the program. “I’m impressed with what Erik put together,” she said. “It combines many of the programs and services we offer at the Herbert Wellness Center into one package. It’s a helpful tool for our new or current members who might need some help getting started on the right track.”

First Step Fitness is open only to new and current members of the Herbert Wellness Center. Register for the program at the Herbert Wellness Center sales office. For more information, call 305-284-5433 or email wellnesscenter@miami.edu.

Personal trainers at the Herbert Wellness Center are typically UM students earning degrees in an exercise-related field such as exercise science, exercise physiology, sports medicine, or physical therapy. Each trainer is certified through a nationally recognized organization and exhibits practical and intellectual competency and leadership in fitness.

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Be Smoke Free in 2015

Quitting smoking can be a challenging process, but with the aid of the University of Miami’s award-winning BeSmokeFree program, which offers free group classes led by a certified tobacco treatment specialist, individuals can get the support and tools necessary to become tobacco free. The classes are offered in six-week intervals and the next sessions begin Tuesday, March 31, and Thursday, April 2, at the Miller School of Medicine campus and Wednesday, April 1, at the Coral Gables campus.

Click here for more information and to view a class schedule. This free benefit is available to UM employees, students, and the community. It is sponsored by the AHEC Tobacco Program of the University of Miami and the Florida Department of Health.

For more information or to register, call 305-243-7606 or email Mohammad Asad at MAsad@med.miami.edu.

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Week of Well-Being Returns April 6

WOWforEveritasFaculty, staff, and students are invited to transform their lives when the annual Week of Well-Being returns Monday, April 6 with five days of events and activities focused on workplace wellness. Among them: Workshops led by Jimmy Page, motivational speaker and author of One Word That Will Change Your Life; exercise sessions led by UM alumna and fitness enthusiast Nicole Chaplin; nutritional classes; financial education seminars; and wellness fairs featuring free massages, vision screenings courtesy of Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, and much more. For a complete schedule and satellite location activities, visit Week of Well-Being.

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