Spring UP Fever Hits Alberta
April 18, 2017 | By Urban Poling
Never has there been so much UP activity in Alberta! It started in mid-March, a few days before spring officially arrived with the opportunity to provide training to 45 members of the provincial Alberta Health Services Health Promotion Team gathered in Calgary. A dynamite team of instructors including Susan Yackulic (Edmonton), Deborah Foley (Canmore) and Marilyn Mann (Red Deer) assisted me. Shortly after, we received this feedback from the Manager: “Thank you for your excellent presentation and passion for urban polling on our team’s recognition day. Some of the staff are still talking about how much they enjoyed the poling and that it is a wonderful activity.” It shows no sign of slowing down until summer arrives. I am not complaining, I LOVE sharing my passion for poling!
On Thursday, Mar 2nd, the front page headline story in my local newspaper, the Rocky Mountain Outlook, was entitled the Titchener Road to Recovery The very first line read: “Rarely has grit and determination been captured so well as in the shaky cell phone video of Ryan Titchener walking down a Canmore Hospital hallway with a pair of ski poles.” Of course, I knew that Ryan did not make those shaky steps with ski poles (that would be dangerous!) and I knew the Canmore Hospital Physiotherapy Department uses our ACTIVATOR poles for rehab. I confirmed this fact with Ryan’s physiotherapist and got word to Ryan that I would be delighted to provide Ryan with his own pair of Urban Poles that he can use as he steps forward with his recovery and also use, instead of a cane, when he eventually scales HaLing, the local mountain with a challenging hike to the summit. On April 24th, I met with Ryan prior to his gym workout and gave him his poles. Ryan has promised to keep us updated on his remarkable progress. Go, Ryan, go! We can’t wait to see where the poles take you!
Apr 24 – Jun 4 – Get Out Get Active with PCNs
Urban Poling is thrilled to be partnering with 21 primary care networks in the greater Edmonton and northern regions of Alberta on this year’s “Return to Life Virtual Health Journey.” We have provided two pairs of Urban Poles as Grand Prizes for the 6 week challenge. Consider joining me for a one-hour webinar to learn more about Urban Poling on Friday, Apr 28th over the lunch hour from 12:10 pm to 1:00 pm. It’s free! Register here.
All Albertans are welcome to join the virtual challenge to track their activity. You can register as an individual or join our Urban Poling team effort and log your activity.
Apr 25 – Canadian Obesity Network Conference – Banff
I will be delivering a 1.5 hour presentation and outdoor session at the Canadian Obesity Network’s national conference taking place at the Banff Springs Hotel entitled: “Nordic Walking: An Ideal Activity for Prevention and Management of Obesity”
May 2 – Arthritis Webinar: 5pm MT
This webinar has been customized for Arthritis Society volunteers, but if you are considering trying Nordic walking for fitness, or if you have arthritis, you might want to tune in for this complimentary one-hour webinar. Register here.
There is a webinar for health care professionals on arthritis on May 25th – click here for more information.
May 4 – Health Care Solutions 2017 Symposium – Edmonton
I will be presenting at this free event, taking place in Edmonton for physiotherapists, occupational therapists and nurses. Click here for more information.
May 8 & 9 – Alberta Centre for Active Living 2017 Physical Activity Forum (Edmonton & Calgary)
Urban Poling will be leading a 30-minute early morning energizer session to kick off the 2017 Physical Activity Forum. Join Susan Yackulic and Lisa Workman in Edmonton or Mandy Johnson in Calgary to clear your minds prior to thinking about how not to overthink physical activity messaging. Click here for more information.
May 6th – Spring FUNdamentals in Grande Prairie
Local Urban Poling champion Bethe Goldie will be leading a free FUNdamentals Nordic walking session for The County of Grande Prairie Recreation Department at the Wapiti Dunes Trails from 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm.
May 13/14 – YYC Fit Expo
Calgary’s first expo dedicated to fitness has been over a year in the planning and will be two days of high energy demos, interesting speakers and exhibits. Find out more here.
Stop by our exhibit to meet some of Calgary’s most enthusiastic Urban Poling instructors. Don’t miss our demo and Mandy will be a featured speaker, click here for more information.
We have provided a fabulous prize for early bird ticket purchasers (before May 9th) that includes a pair of Adventure poles, a stay in Canmore’s gorgeous B&B, the Grandview Chalet, and a private poling lesson with Mandy, valued at over $400.
May 17 Lethbridge Chapter, Alberta Theraputic Recreation Association
I will be presenting to the ATRA, Lethbridge chapter, at 4:45 pm. While in the Lethbridge and Medicine Hat region, I am open to other opportunities to promote Urban Poling.
May 31st – Active Living for Stroke Rehabilitation
This webinar is targeted to health care professionals working with clients on stroke rehabilitation, register here.
June 3 – National Health and Fitness Day – Quarry Lake, Canmore
National Health and Fitness Day is an initiative to mark one day, the first Saturday in June, as the day when Canadians get out and get active in any way they wish. Springboarding off the spirit of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, former MP John Weston and Senator Nancy Greene Raine have worked to involve the 338 MPs and 100 Senators to encourage their local communities to proclaim the day and mark it with local events. Hundreds of communities have already proclaimed the day and the National Health and Fitness Day Act, Bill S-211, became law in December 2014!
What a perfect day to promote Urban Poling! Here in Canmore, I will be offering a free introductory “Try It” session on the trails at beautiful Quarry Lake. Details to be posted soon to the Calgary Nordic Walking MeetUp page.
June 4 – Urban Poling Instructor Course – Calgary Winter Club
The Calgary Winter Club is a premiere private sport and social club located adjacent to a Calgary landmark, Nose Hill Park. Fitness staff were introduced to Urban Poling last fall, now the club is ready to host the Urban Poling Instructor Course from 11:00 am to 3:30 pm on June 4th. Details here.
This is by no means an complete list of activities, as classes are springing up all over the province, but the highlights of what will be the busiest spring ever for Urban Poling in Alberta. For details on where to find classes, please visit the find a class page of our website.
Enjoy the return of spring everyone and happy trails!
Alberta Ambassador & Master Trainer
For moderately steep slopes, simply decrease the pressure on the base of the handles or drag your poles behind you. For steep slopes, keep your poles upright and in front and out to the side slightly, so if you do fall you won’t land on your poles. Bend your knees and elbows, and slow down any momentum. For long descents, it may be helpful to lengthen the poles.
–Barb Gormley, Director of Education