Here’s a way to study and still stay on the move, keep fit

By Megan Lein ‘15

Turns out that cavemen have more to teach us than we thought.

They were always on the move, and now Simpson has a way for students to do the same, even while studying.

With the help of the Exercise Science Club, Student Government Association and a generous donation by TrekDesk, students are now able to study on a treadmill desk available in Dunn Library on campus. Students not only can stay fit, they also can improve their retention dramatically.

“There’s a lot of research linking memory and retention while exercising,” said Nicci Whalen, department chair of Sport Science and Health Education. “Our ancestors were always mobile while learning and we need to take a cue from them.”

Whalen said sitting is the worst possible way to study. TrekDesks allow students to walk while reading, flip through flashcards or send emails. And doing so will make them more likely to remember the study material come test time.

She said there are many added benefits by using a treadmill desk besides improved memory, including weight loss, increased productivity and a happier mood.

The TrekDesk is essentially an innovative way to get people back on their feet during the workday. Whalen says that if you go to any large company such as Principal Financial Group or Wells Fargo, you’ll see a few employees in their cubicles working on TrekDesks.

“Treadmill desks are the way of the future in corporate America,” Whalen said. “The more active you can keep employees, the more productive they’ll be.”

Whalen encourages Simpson faculty and staff to take a break and benefit from the TrekDesk as well.

Junior Shelby Randolph, president of Exercise Science Club, explains that the more you move, the more you’ll be able to re-energize yourself and keep working on your homework.

Besides using one of two new TrekDesks on campus, Randolph encourages students to take additional brain breaks to help improve retention. Try going for a walk around the block or to the water fountain, doing 10 squats or even break out into a groove session to a short song.

“Finals are coming up so make sure you are setting your alarm every 30-45 minutes,” Whalen said. “Get yourself elevated, take a sip of water and prepare for another wave of energy. Any movement is better than nothing.”