Live Healthy Iowa launching wellness in Wright County

This group gathered at Hagie Manufacturing on September 19 to start making activity goals for the county. In the back row on the far left is Chuck Long, Iowa Sports Foundation CEO, and in the back far right is Dr. Amy Michelle Willcockson, Live Healthy Iowa director. Photo submitted

Every year, Wright County citizens have the opportunity to participate in statewide sports competitions, including the Iowa Summer and Winter Games, the Senior Games, and various 5Ks, walks, and challenges. While some individuals and local sports teams have participated, the Iowa Sports Foundation, and their Live Healthy Iowa branch, has bigger goals.

The Iowa Sports Foundation is headed up by CEO Chuck Long, who played football for the University of Iowa, then turned in eight seasons with the Detroit Lions and Los Angeles Rams before joining the University of Iowa coaching staff in 1995. Last year, the Iowa Sports Foundation also hired Dr. Amy Michelle Willcockson to lead the Live Healthy Iowa program, and she has an audacious goal: to make Iowa the #1 healthiest state in the country.

Iowa is ranked 39 of 52 states and territories in obesity and 28/52 in inactivity, for an overall ranking of 23. By the 2016 Active Iowa Index, Wright County is ranked 73 out of Iowa’s 99 counties.

A group of Wright County citizens is looking to change that. Live Healthy Iowa leaders held their first Wright County meeting in July with the intent to resurrect the county’s old wellness coalition. Since then, there have been two more meetings with more and more community members invited to add steam to the movement, with around 45 people attending a meeting at Hagie Manufacturing on September 19.

 

For the full story, see the September 28 edition of the Monitor.