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Posts Tagged ‘The Cooper Institute’

Cooper Offers a New Way of Doing Wellness

September 19, 2014 Leave a comment

Cooper Wellness Strategies (formerly Cooper Consulting Partners), announces a new name to align with the launch of its expanded suite of wellness offerings for employers, insurers, providers and individuals. Read the full press release here.

Earlier this week, the teammates (employees) of Cooper Wellness Strategies invited teammates from the Cooper Aerobics campus to share the exciting news!

Led by Tyler Cooper, MD, MPH, Founding Partner of Cooper Wellness Strategies and President and CEO of Cooper Aerobics, Cooper Wellness Strategies focuses on creating customized wellness plans for groups and individuals based on strategic consulting, leader training and lifestyle education, including new personalized online education programs and mobile health applications. The new name reflects the use of an expanding continuum of tools to positively impact health risk factors with market leading solutions. Cooper Wellness Strategies has serviced more than 100 Fortune 500 companies since 1995 including organizations such as Chick-fil-A, National Instruments, Devon Energy, H-E-B and Mary Kay Cosmetics.

“Cooper Aerobics is committed to creating a world where people can live longer, healthier lives. Each of our businesses focus on helping individuals of all ages and corporations reduce health risk factors based on scientific research through The Cooper Institute, “ said Dr. Tyler Cooper. “Cooper Wellness Strategies realizes communication is essential to a successful program and employers need to use their wellness dollars responsibly.”

To learn more about Cooper Wellness Strategies clients and services visit cooperwellness.com or call 972.560.3263.

 

Does Sitting Too Much Affect Your Heart Health?

There is a new area of science looking specifically at the harms of physical inactivity or sedentary behavior, which is not necessarily the inverse of benefits of physical activity, according to Nina Radford, MD, Cardiologist and Director of Clinical Research at Cooper Clinic.

Most of the data suggests that if you spend too much time sitting, you’re more likely to develop risk factors for heart disease and diabetes. The more time you spend sitting, the more weight you gain, the more your waist circumference increases, your blood sugar rises and cholesterol profile worsens.

Improve Your Heart Health
There are several conventional recommendations to people who sit long periods of time each day. Some of these suggestions include:

  • Get up once an hour and take a walk.
  • Stand while on the phone or opening mail.
  • Rather than emailing a colleague who works down the hall, walk down the hall to speak to them instead.
  • At lunch, take some time to walk around your building or around the block.

While these suggestions can’t hurt, there’s a bigger picture we have to look at, says Dr. Radford. Being sedentary isn’t only about sitting at your desk at work. It’s a sedentary lifestyle that is truly dangerous. People who are sedentary get less moderate physical activity and may have worse diet patterns.

New research shows that someone who is physically fit and makes regular exercise a priority, but who has a desk job, has fewer risk factors for heart disease than someone who has a desk job and is not physically fit.

“There is a new idea that if you sit at your desk all day, going to the gym at night won’t help, but that is not necessarily the case,” says Dr. Radford.

Researchers at The Cooper Institute have found that the adverse effects of time spent sitting are less pronounced the more fit you are.

“The notion that you can’t undo the ravages of a sedentary lifestyle by exercising every day is a bad public health message and the data doesn’t convincingly demonstrate that,” says Dr. Radford

So what does Dr. Radford recommend? Be generally active and get an annual physcial exam. Make it a priority to get 150 minutes of moderate physical activity every week. If you do have to sit long periods of time, get up and move around as much as possible, but the real emphasis is on living an otherwise active lifestyle.

Leading Healthy Change by Example

What are ways you can set a healthy example at work?

Over the years, Cooper Consulting Partners has discovered that a healthy company is driven from the top down and leading by example yields results. Passionate and engaged leadership is the force behind most successful corporate wellness programs.

To help executives activate change within themselves and their organizations, Cooper Consulting Partners created Fit:Business. The healthy leadership workshop is based on research from The Cooper Institute that has revolutionized health and wellness, and inspired millions of people to live healthier lives.

Offered as a one-day interactive workshop, Fit:Business is our flagship training program that achieves the ultimate output by helping the participants connect their personal health to their productivity, while at the same time driving healthier behaviors of those around them.

The full-day Fit:Business workshop includes:

  • Sessions on leading healthy change, stress management, exercise, nutrition and more.
  • An interactive participant guide to use during the program and as a reference following the program.
  • Light activity breaks to keep participants engaged and to demonstrate the ease and efficiency of an active lifestyle.
  • A healthy breakfast, lunch and afternoon snack.
  • One-year license to Fit:Mobile – the workshop’s companion content app that drives ongoing engagement.

The next Fit:Business session will be held in Dallas on April 24, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Register today or click here to find out more about upcoming sessions in your area, contact Cooper Consulting Partners.

Happy Birthday, Dr. Cooper!

March 3, 2014 7 comments

Today at Cooper Aerobics we are celebrating Dr. Cooper’s birthday! He is known throughout the world for being a visionary and as the “father of aerobics.” To celebrate his 83rd birthday, let’s take a look at his accomplishments at age 82 and how he continues to stay young at heart.

Recently, Dr. Cooper participated in an interview with 1080 KRLD-AM radio on “being young at heart” for American Heart Association’s National Heart Month. During the interview, he was asked if he thought of himself more as a teacher or a physician. At first, he said, “both.” Then as he shared his daily and weekly routine, he narrowed it down—he is a teacher. He lives to teach and preach his message to inspire people to live longer, healthier lives.

For example,  Dr. Cooper speaks to a group of students from The Cooper Institute pursuing a personal training certification on the topic of “Exercise is Medicine.” On Feb. 26, Dr. Cooper visited Duncan, Okla., to give the same presentation to Duncan Regional Hospital in celebration of Health Week. The local newspaper’s headline was Aerobics guru: get off the couch to live longer and healthier life. The article reads, “Cooper…presented a rapid-fire PowerPoint presentation of statistics and studies that support a theory now embraced by all health professionals.”

When asked about retirement, Dr. Cooper said, “as long as you love what you’re doing, you will never work a day in your life.”

February 2014

Dr. Cooper was selected to be the honorary chairman for the 2014 Dallas Heart Walk.

He celebrated the completion of the multi-million dollar Cooper Fitness Center renovation with a ribbon run-through with his son, Dr. Tyler Cooper, and Dallas Cowboys Legends Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman.

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January 2014

Dr. Cooper took some time off and enjoyed a 23-day Antarctic cruise with his wife, Millie Cooper.

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December 2013

Dr. Cooper received his ninth honorary degree on Dec. 14 from Ball State University.

November 2013

More than 18,000 experts from around the world came to Dallas for American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions on Nov. 18. Dr. Cooper was the keynote speaker. See news coverage from Huffington Post, Good Morning Texas and KDFW-FOX.

October 2013

As a proud alumnus of University of Oklahoma, Dr. Cooper supported his team at the annual Red River Rivalry game on Oct. 12.

Later that month, Dr. and Mrs. Cooper took time off to visit sunny San Diego.

September 2013

Dr. Cooper is passionate about eliminating childhood obesity.

On Sept. 9, Dr. Cooper and The Cooper Institute’s CEO Blaine Nelson joined with members from the Hungarian government and FitnessGram to formally sign an agreement with the Hungarian School Sports Federation to implement a new International Youth Fitness Test based on FitnessGram.

And on Sept. 10 he celebrated and honored 51 Healthy Zone Schools with Troy Aikman, co-chairman of the Healthy Zone School Recognition Program.

August 2013

Dr. and Mrs. Cooper contributed to churches in Brazil and received a thank you photo from the kids.

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July 2013

Dr. Cooper had his first workout on Cooper Fitness Center’s new, state-of-the-art Precor cardio equipment. These machines were part of the multi-million renovation and are all programed with the latest technology console, called Preva® Networked Fitness.

June 2013

Every year, Drs. Cooper take a father-son trip. In June they traveled to Norway on the “Land of the Polar Bears” National Geographic Expedition.

May 2013

Dr. Cooper honored Fred and Barbara Meyer, long-time Cooper supporters who both passed away within the last year, by planting a new tree at Cooper Aerobics Center with Fred and Barbara’s daughter. The tree and plaque are located in front of The Cooper Institute.

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April 2013

At the BOAO Economic Forum in China on April 6-8, Dr. Cooper participated in a panel with two Nobel Prize laureates in medicine to talk about the importance of preventive medicine and share the Get Cooperized message.

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Dr. and Mrs. Cooper celebrated the opening of the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum on April 25.

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March 2013

Along with celebrating his 82nd birthday, Dr. Cooper celebrated the 45th anniversary of Aerobics.
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In addition to all of his professional achievements, Dr. Cooper is also a caring grandfather of five to Ridge (11), Tenley (9), Clark (8), Lang (6) and Kai (4).
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Here’s to a happy, healthy 83rd year, Dr. Cooper!

Cooper Fitness Center Unveils Multi-Million Dollar Renovation

February 11, 2014 2 comments

Today it’s hard to grasp that exercise was not a part of daily life in the ’70s. Dr. Cooper first opened Cooper Fitness Center, Dallas in 1972 and it was rebuilt in 1982 after a fire.

Dr. and Mrs. Kenneth Cooper
1982 (left)  |  2014 (right)  

Dr. and Mrs. Kenneth Cooper
with son Dr. Tyler Cooper (CEO of Cooper Aerobics Enterprises)
and his wife, Angie, and kids

Feb. 5, 2014

In April 2012, we began a $7.5 million renovation and Feb. 5, 2014 we celebrated the completion of the renovation. To mark this milestone, we invited local media to join the ceremonial event. Instead of a ribbon-cutting ceremony we did it the Cooperized way and had a ribbon run-through!

Drs. Cooper ran through the ribbon being held by Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman in the newly-renovated lobby of Cooper Fitness Center. Roger and Troy, who have many things common, also have something else in common that not everyone knows—they are Cooperized! Members of Cooper Fitness Center, they have both been supporters of Cooper Aerobics for many years. Did you know Roger was a patient of Dr. Cooper’s in the ’70s? And Troy is co-chairman of the Healthy School Zone Recognition Program at The Cooper Institute?

“A few years ago, as we were looking at where we were as an organization and where we needed to go, we recognized that for a very nice, high-end fitness center, we were dealing with a 1982 building,” said Dr. Tyler Cooper, CEO of Cooper Aerobics Enterprises and the son of “Father of Aerobics” Dr. Kenneth Cooper. “We realized that that we needed to take a few steps back to move forward and improve the experience of our membership.”

Read the news release and see highlights from The Dallas Morning News, Dallas Business Journal, D Daily Healthcare, Preston Hollow Advocate and others here.

Not only did we celebrate with the media, but also with Cooper Fitness Center members and staff. We were open throughout the renovation to continue providing services to our members. As you can imagine, they went through much transition to have the renovated building we have today.

At the member celebration, Cooper Aerobics and Cooper Fitness Center staff volunteered to demonstrate activities in each of the areas within the fitness center. Our members and their guests enjoyed seeing programs like TRX in Small Group Training, Private Pilates, Yoga, Indoor Cycle, Group Exercise and spa treatments in Cooper Spa.

“We have accomplished a lot since we first opened Cooper Fitness Center more than 40 years ago,” Dr. Tyler Cooper said. “[With the renovated facility], we are equipping the next generation to live better, longer, more productive lives.”

See more photos of the renovated facility at cooperfitnesscenter.com and on the Cooper Aerobics Facebook page. Click here to request a tour of Cooper Fitness Center.

Dr. Cooper’s Response to Recent Vitamin Studies

December 17, 2013 9 comments

Dr. Cooper continues to provide insight as an inspiring authority in preventive medicine.

In a new editorial in Annals of Internal Medicine (Dec. 16, 2013), physicians warn that “most supplements do not prevent chronic disease or death, their use is not justified and they should be avoided.”

We spoke to our own Kenneth H. Cooper, MD, MPH, on this topic and here are his thoughts:

I’m a strong believer in objective scientific research. In 1984 it was said that exercise did nothing but make you feel good. In the 1970s I began my work to prove that exercise is medicine. Today with our over 600 research articles published on the subject [at The Cooper Institute] we can say for certain that exercise is medicine and has health benefits. On exercise we have bridged the gap between faddism and scientific legitimacy.

I feel that we are in the same place today on the subject of vitamin supplementation as we were 25 to 30 years ago on exercise. It’s my opinion that we should try to prove or disprove the use of vitamin supplementation with objective research.

Recent studies, including those in the Annals of Internal Medicine article are not objective science. The reason is that in nearly all these studies researchers do not measure the blood level of vitamins to determine whether a person needs a vitamin or not. Researchers arbitrarily put study participants on a supplement and compare them to those on a placebo.

In our studies on vitamins B12, D and omega-3 (conducted over the last eight years) we have looked at blood levels and show that they vary tremendously. Some people taking no supplements have a very high level of certain vitamins and some people taking supplements have a very low blood level of vitamins. At Cooper Clinic we treat vitamins like any drug we prescribe. We measure the blood level and recommend vitamin dosages to get blood levels up to satisfactory levels. In my opinion that’s how a vitamin has to be prescribed. In addition, we are studying the long-term benefits of these vitamins in our practice of preventive medicine.

The benefits of vitamins are well documented in scientific literature. For example:

  1. Vitamin D supplementation reduces fractures from falls in the elderly (as shown in most studies).
  2. Vitamin D deficiencies can be a factor in osteopenia and osteoporosis and supplementation can be used to treat it.
  3. Vitamin D deficiency may be related to Multiple Sclerosis and in some clinics, high doses of vitamin D are being used to treat it.
  4. Vitamin B6 in some cases has been effective in treating carpal tunnel syndrome.
  5. Omega-3 supplementation has been approved by the FDA to lower blood triglyceride levels.
  6. Niacin (vitamin B3) is used to lower total cholesterol and to increase HDL (good) cholesterol.
  7. Folic acid deficiencies in women have been known to result in spinal bifida and neural tube defects in the newborn.
  8. Vitamin B12 is used as a treatment to correct pernicious anemia and is a factor in cognitive dysfunction in the elderly.
  9. Folic acid, B6 and B12 have been shown to lower Homocysteine levels, hopefully a beneficial effect on reducing the frequency of heart attacks and stroke.
  10. Niacin (vitamin B3) has been used to reduce the frequency of some cancers.

I believe that in order to practice responsible medicine we cannot make a broad based statement about vitamins. If every American ate between five to nine servings of fruit and vegetables a day we would not need additional vitamin supplementation. However, because the average American adult eats 3.1 servings of fruits and vegetables and the average teenager gets 1.6 servings, levels of vitamins in the blood can be low and supplementation becomes necessary.

While we can never replace a good diet, I continue to recommend vitamins as insurance for people who don’t follow the recommended daily serving of fruit and vegetables.

To learn more about Dr. Cooper’s work in preventive medicine as the ‘father of aerobics’, click here.

Living a Life of Alignment

November 12, 2013 1 comment

Some people will know Cooper Aerobics by a particular “entity” that has somehow made a connection in their life. This could be a youth program at Cooper Fitness Center, a preventive exam at Cooper Clinic or our Cooper Complete vitamins in local grocery stores. For an impressionable graduate student to have the opportunity to work for three of the eight Cooper businesses during her post-baccalaureate career is a testament to the teammates of Cooper Aerobics and the culture we strive to maintain. Jasmin shared her passion for writing with our team and I asked her to write a guest blog post. We discussed her busy lifestyle as a working graduate student and how working in an environment where health and wellness is a priority can help align your life.

One of my favorite lyrics of all time comes from The Beatles song ‘All You Need is Love’. The line states, “There’s no place you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be, it’s easy.” As I sat in the Coaching Healthy Behaviors course at The Cooper Institute a few weeks ago, that phrase resonated with me. I considered all the steps that led me to that point. Last September, I started working as a service desk associate at Cooper Fitness Center. After a few months of inquiry, I landed an internship with the research department at The Cooper Institute for the summer. This experience equipped me with skills that enabled me to apply for my current position, a corporate wellness intern at Cooper Consulting Partners. It’s like each step aligned perfectly with the next.

Alignment is a lively word, isn’t it? It makes me think of attempting yoga moves, lengthening and adjusting your limbs appropriately to achieve a posture gracefully. Living a life of alignment to me, is when every aspect of your life flows nicely with the other. Your personal goals, professional goals, health goals—everything is working synergistically. I strive for this type of alignment. I used to think it was important to remain super busy and to balance it all. But, now, I’ve learned that less is more, especially when everything you do has a significant purpose.

While taking that course that day I experienced a moment of clarity—a moment where I could clearly see that I was where I was meant to be. I think those moments come often when you are living a life of alignment. And all of those little moments add up to your life’s journey towards fulfilling your purpose. It’s a beautiful thought, don’t you think?

Want to be an intern or apply for a position with Cooper Aerobics? Click here to see the available opportunities. Join Cooper Consulting Partners on Thursday for ‘Leading a Fit Business’ one-day seminar. Register today to learn the proven methods to influence a culture of wellness.

Aerobic vs. Cardiovascular Exercise

Aerobic ExerciseAerobic exercise or cardiovascular exercise – what’s the difference? You may not know the answer to the question, but it’s simple. They are the same!

As you kick off your cardio routine, it’s important to know if what you’re doing is truly aerobic or not, and which exercises qualify as aerobic. Aerobic exercise must meet three criteria:

  1. It must engage large muscle groups.
  2. It must use lots of oxygen.
  3. It should be something you can do continuously.

When an activity meets all three of Dr. Kenneth H. Cooper’s criteria, it is considered to be an aerobic or cardiovascular exercise. In Dr. Cooper’s book, Aerobics for Total Well-Being, he developed a list primary and secondary aerobic activities.

Primary exercises would exercise such as cross-country skiing, swimming, running, jogging, cycling or walking. Dr. Cooper also documented a list of secondary exercises. They meet the three criteria pretty well, but not quite as well as the primary exercises. For example, circuit weight training would fall into the secondary exercises.

Finding Your Sweet Spot
There are multiple activities you can do to gain cardiovascular benefits. Everyone has their own workout preferences, and you may find that you’re more adherent to an exercise program if you vary what you’re doing. Try switching up your activities throughout the week.

How much aerobic exercise do yo need for health benefits? The Cooper Institute is a proponent of the American College of Sports Medicine‘s recommendation to get at least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity aerobic activity as a minimum for good health. Depending on what your goals are, it will influence you how much exercise you should do.

Remember – more is better, but only to a certain point. It varies from person to person, so there’s not an definitive answer on how much is too much. The sweet spot for optimal health benefits of aerobic activity is in between 150 to 300 minutes per week. Once you go beyond 300 minutes, you may receive additional fitness benefits, but you may not get added health benefits.

What’s your favorite aerobic exercise?

Podcast: Midlife Cardiorespiratory Fitness Levels and Later-Life Dementia

February 25, 2013 Leave a comment
Laura DeFina, MD, interim chief scientific officer, Cooper Institute

Laura DeFina, MD, Interim Chief Scientific Officer, The Cooper Institute

Laura DeFina, MD, from The Cooper Institute, is interviewed about research published this month in the Annals of Internal of Medicine. The study, shows that individuals who are fit at midlife have a lower risk of deveoping Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias in their Medicare years.

The study followed more than 19,000 generally healthy men and women who completed a preventive medical exam at Cooper Clinic in Dallas when they were, on average, 49 years of age. The exam also included an assessment of other health risk factors such as body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, and cholesterol. Their health status was evaluated using Medicare data between the years 1999 and 2009, an average of 24 years after their Cooper Clinic examination.

Listen to hear Dr. DeFina’s thoughts on the study.

Congratulations to our Wellness Warriors!

January 16, 2013 Leave a comment

CF logo_color_RGBWe are fortunate to have organization leaders who understand the importance of employee wellness and providing teammates with the tools and resources to meet their health goals. Our internal wellness program, called Cooper Fit, aims to Cooperize teammates through three key steps:

  1. Know your numbers.
  2. Be willing to act on the need for health improvement.
  3. Learn how to make the needed changes.

Each year Cooper Fit names a “Wellness Warrior” to honor teammates who have made a significant impact in their life, or the lives of others, in the field of health and wellness. After reading through multiple nominations and inspiring stories, three teammates were named our 2012 Cooper Fit Wellness Warriors.

Read more about each of their stories on how they began and are continuing a journey to good health.

Cathy Sides, Director of Customer Relations, Cooper Complete and Cooper Wellness

Cathy’s journey began as she looked in her closet and realized she couldn’t fit into many of her clothes. Due to a knee surgery, her fitness plan was put on hold. As time passed, she decided that her knee was no longer an excuse.  She had already developed a love for swimming, but knew she needed to do more to fit into those clothes!

She credits Cooper Fit to helping her on her journey. Cathy stayed motivated through monthly health challenges and by trying out group exercise classes with other teammates. One of her proudest feats was completing a half marathon with her sister, and having a blast doing it!

Cathy’s advice: “Even if you can only walk for 15 minutes during lunch, it’s better than nothing! If possible, try to meet with a dietitian – our bodies are such machines and need the right fuel. Also, find a partner to go on this journey with you! Together, you can set goals and look forward to a long, fit life.”

Juli Doyal, Certification Program Manager, The Cooper Institute

Since March 2012, Juli has lost 35 pounds and five inches off her waist. Her lifestyle now consists of exercise and healthy eating, and she feels terrific! As she worked toward her health goals, Cooper Fit was a great resource, especially for information regarding the balance of healthy eating and physical activity. Over the past year she has learned that making small behavior modifications and tracking calories can contribute to weight loss success.

Not only do the small changes help, but she draws inspiration from her fellow Cooper teammates. Each day Juli aims to take extra steps during her work day, along with adding more water, fruits, veggies and nuts to her diet. She has also cut back on Dr. Pepper, sour cream and Corner Bakery – these are now considered treats that she enjoys in moderation.

Juli’s advice: “Don’t be afraid to spread the word and inspire change. Share information with your family and friends, so they can enjoy the benefits from eating right and exercising!”

Lorraine Rose, Administrative Representative, Cooper Clinic

Lorraine is like many people – she wanted to be healthy and fit, but always  found a reason to not start or stick with a health plan. She had a wake up call at her last physical exam at Cooper Clinic. According to her doctor, she needed to make some major adjustments to her lifestyle.

In March 2012, Lorraine and her husband started Weight Watchers. The Cooper Clinic Nutrition Department had been telling her for years, “Log what you eat!” She was encouraged by both Cooper Fit and Weight Watchers to eat more fruits and veggies, limit sweets and watch portions. She and her husband worked as a team to fix more meals at home, shop smart and hold one another accountable for both successes and mistakes.

It is not always easy for her to make nutritious choices, but when she sees the slow, steady changes in her weight and energy level, she knows her hard work is paying off in this “unbelievably eye-opening journey.”

Lorraine’s advice: “Having a doctor who cares and co-workers who encourage you is awesome.  The best comment I heard during this whole process is, ‘It never tastes as good as skinny and healthy feels.'”

Congratulations to these three teammates on their great accomplishments!