WITF, Capital BlueCross and WellSpan Health are launching “Spring Into Motion,” the next project in Transforming Health’s “Here With You” campaign. The free, 13-week community challenge includes a calendar of daily activities with two live, virtual exercise classes each week. The program offers fun ways to incorporate physical activities for every experience level, every day.

“After a year of limiting our social interactions because of COVID-19, we’re all looking for that breath of fresh air,” said Cara Williams Fry, WITF senior vice president & chief content officer. “With ’Spring Into Motion’ Transforming Health’s goal is to offer our neighbors the tools and motivation to move more and feel better.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the immediate benefits of a single bout of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity are reduction in feelings of anxiety, improved quality of sleep, and lower blood pressure. Regular physical activity not only can help to maintain a healthy weight, but can reduce the risk of dementia, depression, heart disease, and certain cancers.

“We all know that maintaining personal wellness can be challenging, and these stressful and uncertain times have made it even more difficult,” said Anthony Aquilina D.O., executive vice president and chief physician executive at WellSpan Health. “As the weather warms, these events provide a great opportunity to get physical, get outside, and get that needed exercise for your mind and your body.”

“Spring Into Motion” begins the first day of spring, March 20, and runs through the last day of spring, June 19. A calendar, that participants can view online or print, provides an activity or class suggestion each day. Every week, the community is invited to two free, virtual exercise classes with a live instructor. Classes include both low intensity workouts, like “Yoga Basics for Back Health” and high intensity ones, like “Cardio Core Fusion.”  Other resources include links to on-demand workouts with public media programs; options include “Quick Fit with Cassy,” a gentle, zero-impact stretching and strengthening session and “InPACT at Home,” a physical activity program for K-12 students.

“Spring is a perfect time to get active or give your current exercise routine a boost,” said Gina McDonald, a senior health coach at Capital BlueCross. “Warmer weather means more chances to get outdoors and move around, whether that means walks, jogs, hikes or other activities. And best of all, outdoor activities can usually be done at a safe social distance, which continues to be an important rule for health and wellness.”

Transforming Health has promoted health and wellness through its television series and special community engagement initiatives since 2012. In June 2020, Transforming Health launched the “Here With You” campaign in response to the ongoing mental and physical needs of navigating life during the pandemic. Projects have varied, including initiatives to provide free resources to promote physical wellness and mental health and resilience.

Last summer, Transforming Health encouraged the community to get out and exercise with the “To the Moon & Back Walking Challenge.” Over 1,000 walkers participated, with the top team and the top individual walker each winning $500 for their favorite charitable organizations.

This winter, Transforming Health promoted mental wellness through the “Fill PA With Love” cards of caring campaign. The partners provided over 13,000 beautiful free, postage-paid, postcards to recipients. Participants sent cards with messages of comfort and support to their loved ones and to 34 different organizations that serve residents who may be feeling lonely. A map of the over 500 zip codes that received postcards in Pennsylvania and beyond is on the project website.

The “Spring Into Motion” activity calendar and resources can be found at transforminghealth.org.

About WITF

WITF is a trusted provider of public media news and programming for approximately 2.3 million citizens in 19 counties of Central Pennsylvania, encouraging children and adults to Live Inspired®.  A member station of PBS and NPR, WITF uses its broadcast and digital media to connect us to each other and to opportunities for lifelong learning. In 2012, WITF launched Transforming Health to address the rapid changes in the healthcare landscape. Transforming Health is about health care, its quality and its costs, but most importantly it’s about maintaining health in the first place, through individual and collective action. WITF, in partnership with Capital BlueCross and WellSpan Health, are dedicated to empowering Central Pennsylvanians to make choices that lead to better personal health and a strengthened community. For more information, visit transforminghealth.org.

About Capital BlueCross

For more than 80 years, Capital BlueCross has served Central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley by offering health insurance products, services and technology solutions that provide peace of mind to consumers and promote health and wellness for our members. The company delivers innovative solutions through a family of diversified businesses to create healthier lives and lower healthcare costs. Among these solutions are patient-focused care models, leading-edge data analytics and digital health technologies. Additionally, Capital BlueCross Connect health and wellness centers provide in-person service and inspiration to help people reach their health goals. Capital BlueCross is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association.

About WellSpan Health

WellSpan Health is an integrated health system that serves the communities of central Pennsylvania and northern Maryland. The organization is comprised of more than 1,600 employed physicians and advanced practice providers, a regional behavioral health organization, a home care organization, eight respected hospitals, approximately 20,000 employees, and more than 200 patient care locations. WellSpan is a charitable, mission-driven organization, committed to exceptional care for all, lifelong wellness and healthy communities.