UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind expands to Glendale Unified amid return to school season

Ribbon-cutting ceremony
Ribbon-cutting ceremony at Franklin Classical Middle School in Long Beach on May 30, 2019 (Credit: Matthew Flesock)

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Kelsie Sandoval

UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind will host a fitness center opening ceremony at Hoover High School on October 4 at 1:30 p.m. This opening will launch the completion of the Glendale Unified expansion project – the first time in the program’s 20-year history where resources have been expanded to every middle and high school in a district in a single project.

The ceremony will unveil the new equipment the high school received: cycle bikes, hand ergometers, and fitness accessories.

Part of SBSM’s process, which is free to all participating schools, includes assessing what fitness resources the school already has, and complementing the existing collection with cardio and strength training equipment. All Glendale schools also received SBSM accessories, which include exercise mats, cones, agility ladders, tennis balls, jump ropes, a jump rope cart, and sandbells. To maximize the use of the equipment, every PE teacher has been trained in the SBSM fitness curriculum, and they will also be trained in the SBSM nutrition curriculum this fall.

“We are so grateful to UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind for this very special opportunity to further empower our youth to learn, grow, and achieve their aspirational goals. The Sound Body Sound Mind program and this new fitness center give our students the capacity to expand their understanding of health and wellness and develop healthy habits at a young age. As importantly, this program empowers our educators to guide our students on this journey,” Dr. Vivian Ekchian, the Superintendent of Glendale Unified School District, said.

The Glendale Unified expansion project, made possible by an anonymous donation on behalf of UCLA Health, has enabled SBSM to install fitness centers in every middle and high school in the Glendale Unified school district, which will benefit over 13,000 students annually.  The Hoover High School ceremony will mark the fifth of eight openings.

Matt Flesock, the executive director of the program, is proud to provide the schools with a comprehensive fitness center. “Our collaboration with the Glendale school district strengthens our commitment to serving students in greater Los Angeles,” Flesock said.

Beyond Glendale, Sound Body Sound Mind has provided under-resourced middle and high schools with new fitness centers, curriculums, and professional development for staff for over 20 years. The program has provided equipment to more than 145 middle and high schools and impacts nearly 200,000 students annually.