Some of you may know Andrews University Health & Wellness as the fitness office ironically located about ten seconds from the Gazebo. Others may recognize the name as the origin of the “MISSION: FULLY ALIVE” project, which aims at making Andrews University “the healthiest campus in the world,” according to the Health & Wellness homepage.
However, only a few students recognize the center as a location in which students can get full body scans, massages, wellness consultations and extracurricular fitness activities, all geared towards the goal of pushing Andrews students to pursue a healthier and fitter future. Thus, I, Brandon Shin (freshman, biology) was recruited to help unravel the enigma that is University Health & Wellness.
First, in order to take advantage of three specific opportunities: the massage, body scan and consultation, an appointment needs to be booked online at the University Health & Wellness Website. There, you can select the specific service which you require, whether it’s a massage or a long talk about your fitness habits, and choose a time that works most conveniently with your schedule.
If you choose a massage, body scan or consultation, the first thing to do is walk through the glass doors directly adjacent to Student Life. There, you will encounter members of the Health & Wellness Team, such as Rafael Gonzales (senior, nutrition & dietetics) the PR Assistant to Dr. Dominique Wakefield, the head of University Health & Wellness, and the man who provided my facility tour.
I began with a full body scan, which involved stepping on a scale and holding a handle out in front me, almost as if I was riding a Segway. From this contraption, Rafael was able to determine measurements such as my body fat percentage, body mass index, skeletal muscle percentage and overall weight. The machine was also able to calculate my “actual age,” which is interpreted as the age which my body resembles. From here, Rafael was able to give me a few tips to better my overall health, as well as points to keep in mind throughout my future, in order to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle. It was a relatively simple process, but it can prove helpful for people who are trying to truly understand their own bodies.
Following the scan, I entered a second room, which contained a large massage chair. The chair massages the entire body, while rocking back and forth in order to reach tenser spots, ranging in styles from a kneading style to a soft drum. A typical session in the chair is 20 minutes long; however, Rafael pushes that the “20 minutes in the chair is about the same as 40 minutes in a traditional massage.” Regardless of the time conversions, I emerged from the seat feeling more limber and more relaxed.
At the end of my experience, I can say that the massage and body scan were helpful, relaxing, and enlightening. But, if you are already relaxed, the massage may prove less useful, and if you are fully aware of your body, the scan may hold less of a point. However, these are only two of the many services that Andrews University Health & Wellness offers to its students and community. See the University Health & Wellness website for more details on programs that are offered as well as pledges that can be taken regarding your own health.