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Posted December 8 2011

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Student Forum

Kinesiology Lab Days at University of Waterloo helps high school students explore health and movement

WATERLOO - Imagine being able to propel an electric model car around a classroom using only the electrical signals from your muscles. That’s just one of the intriguing health and movement lab applications that more than 1,000 Ontario high school students will experience at the University of Waterloo's Kinesiology Lab Days taking place weekdays from today to Dec. 16.

Hosted by the university’s department of kinesiology, the Kinesiology Lab Days program serves as an educational resource to hundreds of exercise science and biology teachers across the province. This year, Grade 12 students from 47 schools will learn about a wide range of human health and movement-related topics in mini-laboratory sessions.

“Kinesiology Lab Days is our way of introducing the next generation of university students to the exciting science and practice of kinesiology,” said Jim Rush, chair of the department of kinesiology. “Participating in these hands-on labs helps them discover how they can apply their interest in science and health to make a difference in people’s lives.”

The program was established 38 years ago as an introduction to the then relatively new field of kinesiology - the science of human movement. Since then, the University of Waterloo has established itself as an international leader in kinesiology research and education. In July 2007, the Ontario government passed Bill 171, a landmark decision that officially made kinesiology a regulated health profession in this province.

Student visits begin at 10:15 a.m. each day with an introductory presentation on the science of human movement, taking place in the Sun Life Financial Auditorium (Room 1621) in the Lyle S. Hallman Institute for Health Promotion. Afterwards, students participate in lab experiences at the institute and neighbouring B.C Matthews Hall.

This year's lab topics include:

· Injury Prevention Using Ergonomic Design

· Gait and Balance Analysis

· Cardiovascular Health

· Psyched-Up: Learning and Performing Movement Tasks

· Work Those Muscles

· Dietary Forensics

Students will be introduced to equipment and techniques used in many of the kinesiology department's state-of-the-art research and teaching labs. Lab experiences range from learning to use electromyography to measuring breath-by-breath oxygen uptake - and even to the electric model car application.

Waterloo Region and Guelph schools are scheduled to attend on the following days:

· Wednesday, Dec. 7: Southwood Secondary School

· Thursday, Dec. 8: Galt Collegiate

· Friday, Dec. 9: Forest Heights Collegiate

· Monday, Dec. 12: Bishop Macdonell Catholic Secondary School

· Wednesday, Dec. 14: Grand River Collegiate Institute, Waterloo Collegiate Institute

· Thursday, Dec. 15: Resurrection Catholic Secondary School

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