Fitness trainers and wellness coordinators in Indian Country shared culturally specific approaches to health and wellness at the recent Western Tribal Diabetes Project gathering held last month at the Nike World Headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon. Hosted annually by the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board in collaboration with Nike N7, the Native Fitness XV event attracted dozens of participants and presenters including UNITY’s Wellness Warriors Project Coordinator Josh Tso, Navajo.
Certified trainers from the Native American Fitness Council led the break out sessions allowing participants to learn how to teach fitness classes for Native American communities that use creative, culturally-specific approaches. Sessions included basic fitness assessment, aerobic training and creative training techniques to combat diabetes
“UNITY was provided the opportunity to share the progress and success of the Wellness Warriors App, and its innovation that it brings to Indian Country. The App is designed to track fitness, wellness and share healthy, traditional food recipes,” said Tso. “By allowing the App to track one’s mental, spiritual, social and physical health, awareness can be made by seeing the fluctuations throughout a person’s week.”
UNITY hopes that this valuable mobile app resources will be utilized by other youth serving organizations to enhance their wellness experiences. Others who presented at Native Fitness XV included Well For Culture, Nike N7, hoop dancer Tony Duncan (Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, Apache), and artist Bunky Echohawk, (Yakama, Pawnee). The Native Fitness event has attracted 1,500 participants from 170 tribes over the past 14 years.