NASTC Ski and Nutrition Wellness Program helps local students
TRUCKEE ” In a community surrounded by the country’s finest ski resorts, the North American Ski Training Center (NASTC) has found a way to make sure everyone in the community has an opportunity to enjoy it.
On March 1 and 8, NASTC hosted an event for local low-income teenagers to help them encourage a healthy and active lifestyle by teaching them about nutrition and introducing them to skiing.
“The goal of the NASTC Ski and Nutrition Wellness Program is to show kids that being active and healthy can be fun,” said NASTC Director Chris Fellows. “Most of these kids have never had a chance to enjoy skiing in these mountains and might otherwise be staying home when it snows. We want to join tasty, healthy food with winter sports. The Truckee mountain community is a great resource for both.”
The program partnered with Sugar Bowl Ski Resort, which donated the equipment and lift tickets for all the children involved in the program. Instructors from NASTC’s ski instruction program spent the mornings with the children teaching them how to ski and enjoy the snow.
In the afternoon, the program partnered with the Cedar House Sport Hotel to help show that eating healthy is not difficult or expensive and can even be fun. Two nutritionists provided the students with information about what to look for in foods and how to creatively prepare them.
The nutrition curriculum was provided by two registered dietitians, Maria Martin and Erin McCarthy, both of the Tahoe Forest Hospital and the Tahoe Center for Health and Sports Performance. The Executive Chef from Moody’s Bistro, Mark Estee, and chef de cuisine Guy Frentte prepared healthy meals using locally sourced ingredients.
Thrilled with the experience and armed with new knowledge, the children were sent home with ingredients and an assignment to prepare their own healthy meal. Fresh winter vegetables for this assignment were provided by Eat Well Farm in Dixon, Calif.
The participants were high school students from the Truckee -Tahoe area. The students are all previous participants in U.C. Berkeley’s Adventure Risk Challenge Program, which helps motivated English Language Learners by exposing them to the outdoors in conjunction with leadership and academic training to prepare for the future.
This will be the first version of the NASTC Ski and Nutrition Wellness Program, but organizers and partners hope to continue with additional programs in the future.