Welcome to the December 2018 newsletter of Let’s Move in Libraries. This edition highlights: a) a new learning opportunity we’re offering with OCLC/Webjunction, b) how libraries support the whole student during Finals, c) how libraries support outdoor recreation during the Winter, d) how libraries support New Year’s resolutions to try to be more physically active; and e) updates on ongoing Let’s Move in Libraries projects.

Ball Pit at the Hodges Library, University of Tennessee Libraries

Follow (and share with) Let’s Move in Libraries on FacebookInstagram, Twitter, and YouTube to stay up-to-date with what public libraries do to get their communities moving. This month’s featured image comes from Knoxville, Tennessee, where the university library set-up a ball pit to help students unwind and de-stress with some fun physical activity.

Health Literacy Begins at Your Library

We’re thrilled to be working with OCLC/Webjunction on a free webinar being offered January 8. Join us for ideas you can use to offer simple (but powerful) health literacy programs at your library, regardless of size or budget.

The webinar will feature how the Oklahoma Department of Libraries uses its IMLS-LSTA funds to support health literacy programming throughout the state via micro-grants. Also featured will be Marcia Johnson, the director of the Miami, OK, public library, who will share how health literacy became a central part of her library’s operations: They offer everything from diabetes prevention to yoga classes, as well healthy cooking demonstrations and even a community garden. Join us!

Supporting the Whole Student during Finals

As schools and universities enter the period of academic finals, more and more school and academic libraries offer physical activity programs to support student wellness and success. We’ve been tracking what’s been happening! Some highlights:

As part of its #DeStressForSuccess initiative, the University of Tennessee at Knoxville libraries set up a ball pit and offered a variety of fun activities to students throughout Finals.

At the University of Maryland, the library developed a new collection: They now check out a variety of sports and rec equipment, including jump ropes, frisbees, resistance bands, soccer balls, bike pumps, and more!

The University of Toronto’s Robarts Library hosted a “Break Break” program that invited students to enjoy fun fitness activities led by staff from campus rec.

In Singapore, the National Technological University Library installed exercise bikes in the library that students can use to charge their devices and get in some healthy exercise during study breaks.

In Scotland, the University of Glasgow Libraries invited students to join them at the library at 12 noon every day during Finals for a one mile run.

Academic libraries also put up exercise bikes at Arapahoe Community College Library in Colorado; at Nicholls State University’s Ellender Memorial Library in Thibodaux, Louisiana; and at Merrimack College’s McQuade Library in Massachusetts.

And it seems like Yoga was being offered everywhere! We found Yoga being offered at the University of Lincoln (United Kingdom), Old Dominion University Library (Virginia), The University of Michigan at Flint’s Library, Arapahoe Community College Library (Colorado), Adelphi University Libraries (New York), Georgia Tech LibraryJacksonville State University’s Houston Cole Library (Alabama), Marquette University’s Library (Milwaukee), Saint Anselm College’s Library (New Hampshire), University of Nevada Las Vegas Library, California State University – Chico’s Meriam Library, Mount Royal University Library (Calgary), the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s SILS Library, Lone Star College Library (Texas), the University of Wisconsin – Madison’s Art Library, the University of Maryland – Baltimore, and Brandeis University’s Library (Massachusetts).

And it wasn’t just colleges and universities! West High School Library in Knoxville, Tennessee offered Yoga at the Library on three days during the Finals period.

Did we miss you? Do you know of another innovative way college, university, and school libraries are supporting the whole student? Drop us a line!

Supporting outdoor recreation during the Winter

As Winter arrives in the Northern Hemisphere, days get shorter and colder. It can be a struggle to get outside and stay active. Libraries throughout North America are finding ways to help people stay active during the Winter! In Maine, the Blue Hill Public Library held an event called “How to Enjoy Winter.” This event featured opportunities for folks to get out and be active this winter. Several local organizations gave short presentations about their resources and how folks can get active and involved in them, including Blue Hill Heritage Trust, Great Pond Mountain Trust, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, Downeast Audubon, Blue Hill Peninsula Nordic Ski Club, and Blue Hill Skating Club. They will be covering activities like walking, hiking, skiing, skating, snowshoeing, bird-watching, snowmobiling, and sledding. People don’t have to let the winter blues get them down! What a great program idea!

Elsewhere, more and more libraries have started checking out snowshoes at the library. Thanks to a partnership with the Vermont Health Department, you can now check out snowshoes in 46 public libraries there. Libraries in Spokane, Washington, and Dodge Center, Minnesota, also recently developed new snowshoe collections.

Libraries are also hosting fun, outdoor events. In Woodstock, New Brunswick, the L.P. Fisher Public Library held its annual Reindeer Run program on December 8, and made the front page of the local paper!, in High Point, North Carolina, the library co-sponsors the Jingle Jog 5K; in Tennessee, the Friends of the Fairview Public Library host the annual Fernvale Freeze event on New Year’s Day, in which brave participants take a plunge into an icy pool.

Even though it’s cold out, libraries are still putting up outdoors StoryWalks in local parks to encourage reading and being active in nature during the Winter, including Westmont Public Library (Illinois), Jasper Public Library (Indiana), Lewes Public Library (Delaware), and Carter County Public Library (Tennessee).

What are you doing in your library to encourage outdoor recreation during the Winter? We’d love to hear your story! Drop us a line!

Supporting New Year’s resolutions to try to be more physically active

Project director Noah Lenstra just published an article in Public Libraries Online (the official publication of the U.S. Public Library Association) on how public libraries in the United Kingdom and the United States are supporting resolutions to be physically active in the new year. The featured library is Devon Libraries in southwest England, which is doing its sixth annual Active Life, Active Mind programming series in January, with everything from Star Wars Yoga to exercise bikes being set up throughout their 54 library locations. In total, 250 Active Life, Active Mind events will be offered in January. Take a look at the article to learn more!

Are you doing something special to get your community moving in the New Year? Let us know! Drop us a line!

Updates on ongoing Let’s Move in Libraries projects

During January, in the United States 65 public libraries across the country will start offering video-based Geri-Fit® exercise programs for older adults. Thanks to everyone who signed up! We are excited to see this study come to fruition. We’ll be posting updates in future newsletters. Stay tuned!

We are also continuing our partnership with the National Institute on Aging’s Go4Life initiative to support physical activity among older adults. The Go4Life in libraries project is moving forward! We’ll be asking for your help in a future newsletter as we build out this partnership.

On December 4, project director Noah Lenstra led a webinar for the National Network of Libraries of Medicine’s Greater Midwest Region on the topic of “partnership-based health programming,” how to develop health programs by leveraging community partnerships. We had great participation in this webinar, and the video is now online if you missed it.

Finally, in February 2019 Let’s Move in Libraries is teaming up with the State Library of Iowa to offer an Iowa-specific webinar (stay tuned for more info!), and in May 2019, we are working with public librarians in Maryland to offer a session at the 2019 Maryland Library Association conference on outdoor programming in libraries. Want to bring Let’s Move in Libraries virtually to your region – drop us a line – we’re happy to do it and we won’t charge you a dime!

Follow (and share with) Let’s Move in Libraries on FacebookInstagram, Twitter, and YouTube to stay up-to-date with what public libraries around the world do to get their communities moving. Tag us on these platforms to share what your libraries are doing!

Share with us your news! Tag us on social media and email news directly through our website. We’d love to hear from you!

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Subscribe to the monthly Let’s Move in Libraries newsletter for monthly editions of success stories, educational opportunities, and food for thought that will deepen the impact of movement-based programs and services in public libraries. The Let’s Move in Libraries project focuses on how public libraries create opportunities for individuals of all ages and abilities to engage in healthy physical activity.