The directory of community and business organisations in Broadstone Dorset

Residents Association MagazinearrowWinter 2002 - 6


What is a healthy lifestyle? Probably the two most obvious and successful ways in which we can affect our health are through the application of nutrition and exercise, and these areas are examined in some detail at Corfe Hills School through our daily teaching in Science, Food Technology and Sport. Students regularly take part in a wide range of Sporting activities as part of their lessons, but many also play in sports teams after school. To give an idea of just how many students regularly participate in after school sports clubs, currently 52 students take part in netball, 55 play hockey, 18 play badminton, 100 play rugby, 10 take part in cross-country 30 play basketball and 90 play football. We also run after school classes in gymnastics, trampolining and girls rugby. We work hard with students and staff to embrace the principles of a healthy lifestyle and in addition to our teaching and sporting activities we examine many other aspects of health in a special day set a side for all Year9 students which we call 'Health Matters Day'.

'Health Matters Day' is a day given over to workshops and activities intended to provide all students with a broad understanding of the importance of a healthy lifestyle. In particular we look at relationships, how we use our leisure time, exercise, diet and drug awareness. All students have the opportunity to sample a variety of activities including taking part in a session of aerobics. We also examine such issues as taking responsibility for our own sound sexual health and we look closely at ways of reducing stress in our lives.

Students have a marvellous capacity to adapt to, and cope with various sources of stress but if they do get overloaded and exhaustion sets in they need to be able to recognise the signs and take steps to improve the situation. Signs of stress may include the inability to relax or unwind (even when not working), a constant feeling of 'being on edge', having a 'short fuse' and a tendency to explode for no real reasons, feeling tearful, always feeling tired (even after a full night's sleep), sleep disruption (when sleep is disturbed and unrefreshing) and a general feeling of not being able to cope, that 'its all too much'.

Health Matters Day allows our students to sample various methods of reducing the amount of stress in their lives by joining classes in relaxation techniques. These include taster sessions in Tai Chi, Yoga and Reflexology. Tai Chi is the gentle Chinese practice that uses flowing exercise to help improve the flow of Chi (energy) through the body, thus maintaining and improving physical, mental, and spiritual health and nurturing a feeling of wellbeing. Yoga, originally an Indian therapy, is an effective way of promoting flexibility and strength in both mind and body. It can help improve posture, muscle tone, and mobility and can bring about a sense of peace. Reflexology is the ancient healing art first practised in Indian, Chinese and Egyptian cultures. It is a form of natural, holistic therapy based on the discovery that there are points on the feet and hands which correspond to organs, systems and structures within the entire body. The application of this therapy is thought to bring relief to a wide range of conditions including stress.

Health Matters Day also allows students to develop lifesaving skills in Life Support, enabling them to perform resuscitation in an emergency until help arrives. Students have the opportunity to be trained on manikins provided by British Heart Foundation Boscombe Heartstart. In addition, the police give a talk to all students about issues related to drugs, drug related problems and the legal aspects of drugs.

The day is important for all students and staff and could not take place without the generous support of local professionals and school staff who give of their knowledge and time freely by working with the students in such an enthusiastic manner. Our thanks go out to everyone involved.

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Last Updated: 20th February 2004