What is the Hockey Fans in Training program?
Hockey FIT is a 12 week healthy lifestyle program tailored to improve the lifestyles of male hockey fans. Hockey FIT draws on the power and connection people feel towards their favourite sports team to recruit fans who are overweight or obese into a 12 week lifestyle program. The program includes behind-the-scenes access to team dressing rooms, and you never know who will show up at these sessions. In the past, team players and personnel have made an appearance to cheer participants on!
Why target sports fans?
There are a couple of reasons why we’ve targeted sports fans.
- Connectivity: Sports fans are a highly connected group regularly attending or watching games to support their favourite sports team. Hockey FIT draws on this connection to engage fans and pro-actively support and help men build and sustain healthy lifestyle changes.
- Opportunity: Many sports fans are looking for that next level way to engage with their favourite sports team. Hockey FIT provides the opportunity for fans to engage further with their team, going behind the scenes and meeting team staff and players along the way.
- Health Risk: Did you know that sports fans are typically unhealthier than non-sports fans? Research has shown that sport fans are more likely to eat unhealthy foods particularly when their team is losing. Hockey FIT provides fans with the tools and resources through the promotion of safe gradual changes to physical activity levels and healthy eating to make healthier choices.
Who can join the Hockey FIT program?
Currently we are focusing on recruiting men who are overweight or obese. We are looking to expand into other population groups as well.
Why does Hockey FIT only target men?
Hockey FIT is currently geared towards men as this has grown out of a successful pilot originally funded by the Movember Foundation. Recent literature indicates that men’s health in Canada is poor with men living an average of 4 years fewer than their female counterparts. Research also indicates that men prefer to make healthy lifestyle changes in groups with like-minded men who are similar in size and stature. In the future, we are looking towards expanding into the female fan base so stay tuned!
Do I have to live within the city or town to participate in the program?
No. As long as you are a fan of the CHL team, are willing to travel to the fitness facility/arena for assessments and program sessions, and fit the eligibility criteria, you will be able to participate. You will need to find your own transportation to and from sessions.
I don’t fit into the categories listed above for who can join the program, but want to.
How long is Hockey FIT?
Hockey FIT is 12 weeks long with weekly sessions lasting 90 minutes each.
How do I sign up?
I want to join but the team I support is not listed?
Where do sessions take place?
Each team is different but sessions usually take place at the arena, the practice facility, a local health club/community centre or a mix between the three.
Will I need any particular equipment to participate?
No. All of the exercise is on dry-land. There will be no skating involved for those participating with hockey clubs.
Will I get to meet the players during the program?
Maybe! With sessions taking place within the sports team community, who knows who may turn up at a session!
What is involved in a typical session?
Sessions include education about living a healthier lifestyle i.e. diet and physical activity followed by some exercise.
Who will be coaching the sessions?
Each team is different, but it will always be a certified and trained Hockey FIT coach.
Why is there an immediate delivery group and a delayed delivery group? Why isn’t the program delivered to all sites at the same time?
The Hockey FIT trial is a randomized controlled trial, therefore, sites will be randomly allocated to immediate delivery group (deliver the program right away) or delayed delivery group (wait 12 months and then deliver). All sites will deliver the program no matter what group they are allocated to. It is only the timing of delivery that sets these groups apart. Randomization is similar to a flip of a coin and is completed by a third party research group to reduce any influence the Hockey FIT research team may have on allocation. The program content (12 sessions delivered over 12 weeks) will be the same for both immediate and delayed delivery groups.
We randomize sites to immediate delivery or delayed delivery to compare the results from those who receive the Hockey FIT program right away to those who do not. This increases the validity and reliability of the results of the Hockey FIT program providing the strongest evidence to determine the effectiveness of the Hockey FIT program in helping your fans become lose weight, become fit, and lead a healthier lifestyle.
How many men will be recruited into the program?
Our goal is to recruit 40 men per site. These 40 men will be split into 2 groups of 20 with one cohort of 20 attending sessions one evening (e.g., Tuesday nights) and another cohort attending on a different evening (e.g., Thursday nights). The sessions will occur weekly for 12 weeks. Two Hockey FIT coaches will be needed at every session to run the program.
Is medical clearance required for participants in the program?
All participants must be cleared for participation in exercise and physical activity in order to participate in this program. This is completed through a self-screening tool called the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q+). If a participant answers YES to any of the questions about their health status on the PAR-Q+, he will be contacted by the Hockey FIT Research Team to ensure it is safe to participate in Hockey FIT. The Hockey FIT Research Team will be responsible for clearing participants through a protocol that was used in previous studies and supported by Western University’s Research Ethics Board.
How do I get more information about becoming a Hockey FIT coach?
Where is Hockey FIT coach training available?
The workshop is run by our Head Coach & Trainer, Brendan Riggin. Brendan will walk you through the Hockey FIT program, teaching you the ins and outs of how to deliver the program through a fun and interactive workshop. Contact us for more details – HFIT@uwo.ca.
Hockey FIT Online Coach Training: Currently Under Construction.
We are in the process of developing online course modules to better support our coaches. These modules walk through the Hockey FIT program, with self-checks to help test your knowledge. Complete the quiz at the end of the training modules to get your Hockey FIT coach certificate.
How long does the Hockey FIT coach training take?
The coach training workshop is between 6-8 hours and can be done in 1 days or over 2 days. Contact us for more details – HFIT@uwo.ca.
Hockey FIT Online Coach Training: Currently Under Construction.
What is the difference between physical activity and exercise?
Physical activity is steps per day…think walking at your regular pace.
Exercise is moderate to vigorous activity or completing activities where you reach and maintain your target heart rate…think cardio fitness class, running.