Sparking Life is fueling an international movement to re-engineer school practices and medical recommendations to establish curriculum, lifestyles and corporate practices based on the scientific research that confirms physical exercise enhances brain development, improves mental health, reduces addictive behavior, and helps maintain mental acuity as we age.
“Exercise or physical movement is an evolutionary mandate … our body, brain and genes evolved during man’s long evolutionary history. The genes we have today were programmed during millenniums of time and require physical activity for proper gene functioning. Without it our cells become deranged, which leads to the myriad of chronic disease conditions we face today. Physical Activity is a Health Imperative,” states John Ratey, MD, clinical associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and author or co-author of eight books on brain functioning, including SPARK, The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and The Brain.
Exercise physically transforms our brains. And Sparking Life, a nonprofit organization, has taken on the mission to spread the word.
Founded by Dr. Ratey and a diverse team of professionals with common interests in intellectual pursuits, exercise, and community service, Sparking Life is forging relationships with schools, medical organizations, the fitness and health industry, government entities, the media, varied businesses, associations and individuals to help us communicate the overwhelming evidence that aerobic activity will literally change the way we think – and benefit all of society.
Among our current initiatives:
School districts around the nation are implementing New PE programs – before and during academic classes – to optimize learning, improve motivation, activate impulse control, moderate mood, build self-esteem … and make our students want to be in school!
Government entities are seeking our counsel to find better ways to improve the intellectual, mental and physical health of our population and to counterbalance the profound economic consequences of inactivity.
Medical practitioners are seeking scientific research and medical understanding of how exercise sparks the brain, and acquire the necessary tools to assess and recommend changes in patients’ levels of physical activity. As Dr. Ratey presents in SPARK, exercise is simply one of the best treatments we have for most psychiatric problems.
Corporations are looking for ways to encourage their employees to take advantage of in- house gyms or health club memberships, and some health insurance companies reimburse clients for club fees. Their generosity is informed by studies showing that exercise reduces stress and makes for more productive employees.
Foundations and associations with their own important community initiatives recognize the value in collaboration and mass communication.
We welcome all and encourage you to join our effort!
Contact us today at [email protected] to find out how you can be a part of our movement revolution!
“John and our nations’ youth … are the vanguard of today advancing wellness & physically active lifestyles in the war against chronic disease and obesity.”
–New PE founder Phil Lawler of the Naperville School District about Dr Ratey. Together they created the Naperville phenomenon. Phil and John were in contact often, and Phil kept the vision fresh and alive by feeding on John’s passion.