North Central College is one of only 166 universities and colleges around the world to be honored by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Exercise is Medicine® initiative for its efforts to create a culture of wellness on campus.

North Central News

North Central College honored with silver designation by American College of Sports Medicine


Apr 08, 2020

Cardinal Fit program continues through COVID-19 pandemic and helps earn Exercise is Medicine recognition

The Cardinal Fit program, which is part of the College's exercise science offerings, has set a goal to get North Central healthier through a commitment to exercise. The program's faculty advisor Marilyn Skarbek, assistant professor of exercise science and exercise science clinical coordinator, looked to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) for a model of excellence to follow. ACSM recognized the effort by making North Central a silver-designated school within the Exercise is Medicine (EIM) program.

EIM helps colleges and universities deliver the message that exercise is more than a hobby or an obligation. It's just as important to your health as eating right, getting regular checkups, and taking the right medication and treatment when you need it.

Cardinal Fit has led the way in making North Central a model school as part of the EIM and one of only 166 schools across the country to be recognized by ACSM. The program is all about making fitness a good time and getting rid of excuses not to exercise.

“Cardinal Fit offers exercise orientations, fitness evaluations and individualized programs,” said Skarbek. “There are also various events such as cardiodance and the Fitness Playground, and ... small group training sessions.”

Best of all, North Central students, faculty and staff can all enroll in Cardinal Fit for free.

Keeping a pace while sheltering in place

The COVID-19 pandemic and the recommendations that came with it made physical fitness a real problem, as people were suddenly stuck at home and out of the gym. Cardinal Fit took the initiative, creating their own solution for how to exercise while social distancing.

The Cardinal Fit Instagram page became a go-to location for home exercises, workouts, health and wellness tips, and more posts to keep the North Central community moving.

In an email to the campus community, Skarbek wrote, "Physical activity is so important at this time and we want to help you find safe and easy ways to exercise at home. We hope this will be a resource for you now and for many years to come!"

Along with full workouts, tips and visual examples of how to do the exercises, the Instagram account has posted encouraging stories from Cardinal Fit clients to keep spirits up.

"This is my first attempt with exercise programs and personal training I was a little nervous about signing up," said Amy Schwarze, academic assistant for the College of Arts and Sciences. "I have more energy ... I love the program and hope it continues!"

You can read the full press release on the honor from ACSM. To find out more about Cardinal Fit and get advice for your own exercise routine, follow them on Instagram @ncc_cardinalfit.