November 9, 2017
The positive impact of physical activity and recreation on overall health and performance is evidenced by various studies. Based on these findings, the Jacobs University will now become a health promoting university. For this purpose, the learning and working environment and the behavior of students and employees of the JU will be improved with regard to health, satisfaction, and efficiency. As part of the initiative “actively studying – studying moves” the respective concept is now supported by the German university sports federation (ADH) and the health insurance Techniker Krankenkasse (TK) with a project subsidy of 15,000 €.
During an 18-month pilot phase, a planning group of students and employees chaired by Prof. Dr. Sonia Lippke, professor of health psychology and behavioral medicine, has already initiated and carried out the key component, a course for undergraduate students entitled “Success in Studies, Career and Life”. The project aims to provide information and helpful strategies in the areas of stress management, acculturation, nutrition and physical activity. In addition, students are encouraged to try out sports activities and become active themselves. The course is mandatory for all new undergraduate students. "It's amazing to see how interested and grateful most students are", says Sonia Lippke, “and even those who were not initially interested became increasingly motivated and open-minded after realizing that issues related to their own lives are addressed”.
In addition, voluntary physiological tests to assess physical fitness as well as yoga classes, back exercises and nutritional counseling are offered in cooperation with the TK. Silvia Kaiser, prevention consultant at TK: “Of course we do not only want to finance, but also support in implementing the ideas and get them started.”
Local sports clubs present their courses and invite to participate. In particular, the opportunities for physical exercise on the campus and its surrounding should be promoted and expanded further. In the long term, ergonomic chairs and cues to action which motivate to move will be installed to create a more comfortable working environment. "Our concept for students and employees should serve as a role model for other universities and institutions. That is why we are especially grateful for this project funding", says Sonia Lippke.
For more information: