February 19, 2010
1. What are your responsibilities as a wellness program director?
Part of my responsibilities are creating and maintaining the fitness programs for both adult and youth. This includes maintaining the ones that are already existing and creating new programs.
2. What type of training did you need to prepare for this position?
It started as a hobby that grew into a profession. My background was in running. I was never a high school athlete. All of this came about when I was about 30. I started running then and eventually doing triathlons. I got into coaching and marathon training and training for triathlons with adults and children. I did all that in Florida.
3. How did you get started at the Putnam County YMCA?
After moving back here, I started working part-time here at YMCA, giving swimming lessons. From there I became a lifeguard instructor, and it just kept growing into different areas.
4. How do you decide what programs to offer?
I talk to the members a lot, and we do surveys. A lot of it is just the ideas the members have. They tell me what they want. The programs change and grow. People have different interests. Some programs arenít even necessarily physical fitness. Weíre exploring even a cooking class and doing more all around wellness, not just physical activity.
5. What are some of the programs that you have, and what age are they geared for?
For the adult class we have cardio-core class that would be geared toward 12 and older. We have some youth fitness programs geared toward 8 to 12 and have some osteoporosis prevention that is for middle age to senior citizens. We have sitter-size class that is geared to the elderly and those with physical disabilities. We offer yoga and pilates, that is suitable for just about anybody from beginner to advanced. We have cycling class for beginner all the way up to advanced classes.
6. Is it hard to get people to sign up for something like the upcoming lifeguard classes when the snow is blowing outside?
No, because the teens are excited because the outdoor pools are going to open up, and it provides them an opportunity for a job either here or some of the surrounding towns and their outdoor pools.
7. What do you most enjoy about being the director?
Working with the people, thatís a lot of fun, and working with the kids.
8. What is the most difficult part of the position?
Trying to make everybody happy. Our members are important to us, and we want to keep them happy.