LaHaye expands programs

Newly remodeled Student Union offers opportunities for physical training

Although wellness encompasses a number of different facets, including mental, emotional and spiritual health, Liberty University administrators are also focused on the physical well-being of students, faculty and staff.

initiative — The LaHaye gym provides multiple ways for students to exercise. Photo credit: Courtney Russo

Initiative — The LaHaye gym provides multiple ways for students to exercise. Photo credit: Courtney Russo

According to Dean of Students Robert Mullen, Liberty’s recently established Living Well at Liberty Initiative has partnered with the preexisting Live Healthy Liberty program to provide the Liberty community with the convenient options to foster healthy lifestyles.

“The Live Healthy team was very strong in the area of physical health,” Mullen said. “And the Living Well group was strong in the areas of spiritual and emotional health. It was a natural partnership.”

The Live Healthy Liberty program has the goal of “bringing together departments and coordinating efforts to improve the health of students, faculty and staff,” according to its Web page. The program is a “campus-wide effort spearheaded by Campus Recreation.”

One major facet of Live Healthy Liberty is the Wellness Series, which is comprised of lectures geared toward helping people learn how they can develop good habits. Some of the talks are hands-on, while others simply demonstrate and explain how to maintain healthy habits.

“Health and wellness is far more than simply exercise,” Jamie Swyers, associate director of fitness at the LaHaye Student Union, said. “At Wellness Series, we not only invite professionals to give talks of fitness, nutrition and motivation, but we also facilitate presentations on spiritual, mental and emotional wellness for a well-rounded series of talks. I always want to emphasize that wellness encompasses the whole person, and this includes spiritual, mental, emotional, physical and social health.”

According to Swyers, the Live Healthy Liberty campaign provides students, faculty and staff access to a number of opportunities to help increase physical wellness.

“Over the last year, students have become more aware of our programs, especially with the recent facility expansion,” Swyers said. “The response has been overwhelmingly positive, and we have received our highest participation on record for group exercise and personal training in the history of LaHaye.”

Swyers explained that LaHaye stands out from other area gyms and fitness centers because of its high-quality equipment and programs.

“Each member of our fitness staff is hand-picked and thoroughly trained so they are able to offer the campus community safe, effective and exciting fitness options,” Swyers said. “The group exercise instructors and personal trainers at LaHaye really care about the members, the students and the staff.”

According to Swyers, the LaHaye Student Union offers the appeal of convenience to residential students, faculty and staff.

“We are located on campus (and are) easily accessible, with innovative equipment and a lot of space to train, as well as six different group exercise studios that host a variety of class formats,” Swyers said.

Residential students and staff also have the opportunity to participate in a wellness challenge, which encourages students to attend fitness-centered events and helps keep track of exercises and progress, as a part of the Live Healthy Liberty campaign.

“This challenge … encourages students to make healthy nutrition choices, exercise regularly and earn wellness points,” Swyers said. “Students can create teams and win gift cards and prizes.”

Swyers said students should strive for a healthy lifestyle, as it will increase productivity.

“When you are healthy, you are able to think more clearly and act more proactively and practically throughout your day,” Swyers said.

For more information on Live Healthy Liberty or to sign up for the wellness challenge, visit For more information on the Living Well at Liberty, email Mullen at

WALSH is a feature reporter.

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