York students step up to help Markham earn 'Canada's Most Active Community' designation

An initiative to make the City of Markham "Canada’s Most Active Community" will be supported by York University’s School of Kinesiology and Health Science in the Faculty of Health.

Kinesiology students will lead the ParticipACTION Community Better Challenge, a brand-new physical activity challenge that calls for all Canadians to get active and incorporate physical activity where they live, work and play. During the 16-day challenge, students will be distributed throughout the city, primarily at community centres, to support residents in recording and improving their physical activity levels.

The ParticipACTION Community Better Challenge is a physical activity challenge that calls for Canadians incorporate physical activity where they live, work and play

The challenge will kick off on May 31 and run until June 16, when the community with the most achievements – including greatest participation rate by residents and number of community expert partners and events – will be recognized as ParticipACTION’s designate for Canada’s Most Active Community.

The City of Markham, the Markham Pan Am Centre and the KIN Kids program with York’s School of Kinesiology & Health Science will partnering to support the program.

“The goal of the partnership and the role of the KIN Kids program is to have York University students apply their learnings and add some theoretical, technical and practical expertise as to the value, benefits and quantification of physical activity to Markham residents at strategic locations within the community,” said Angelo Belcastro, York University professor and Chair of the School of Kinesiology & Health Science.

The students will learn to share their in-class knowledge about physical activity in a University-to-community engagement project, he said.

An event to mark the project’s kickoff will take place on May 31 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Belcastro has been working with students to develop their technical and soft skills for large community health promotion events.

Recognitions and national awards will be presented in late 2019.

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