(Gazette file photo)

Victoria Grizzlies partner with program to help Victoria men lead healthier, active lifestyles

The goal is to provide the tools for lifelong habits

The Victoria Grizzlies have partnered with a program that promotes healthy, active lifestyles for men.

HAT TRICK is a program based out of the University of British Columbia Okanagan that partners with elite athletic teams in communities to help increase awareness about health and fitness.

Taylor Kirby, HAT TRICK research assistant, said the concept came from Europe, modelled after a program for soccer fans. Participants work out and spend time around a sport that interests them and are supported by athletes. HAT TRICK has worked with Western Hockey League teams such as the Kelowna Rockets and the Kamloops Blazers.

Through the program, they aim to remove the stigma around group workouts for men, and working out with sports teams helps them feel more comfortable. Kirby added men who join the program have a love for sports and have similar values, so the drop-out rate is low.

“They motivate each other, it’s all about competition with guys,” she said. “Guys who’ve done the program a year ago are all still working out together.”

The program is 12 weeks long and each week will include one group session that incorporates physical activity and tips for sustainable changes in eating habits by Grizzlies’ training staff and outside experts. Participants fill out a questionnaire for mental fitness before and after the program. Kirby said results show that most participants are less susceptible to depression once the program is complete.

Lance Black, president of the Grizzlies, said the organization was more than happy to help a good cause. It’s a cause that hits close to home for him as he falls within the age category and recently lost 40 pounds in 90 days.

Black was an avid road biker, but a few years ago was thrown over the handlebars of an electric assist bike. He has struggled with headaches and neck problems ever since, which affects how frequently he works out. Running on a treadmill used to give him strong headaches.

“I wasn’t able to do physical activity like I was before,” he said. “The treadmill and exercise made me feel worse, so it was a vicious cycle.”

After his recent weight loss, Black said he used a treadmill, and has been doing light weights and made it a goal to do some walking every day. He realizes health is important and hopes to speak to participants about leading a healthy lifestyle.

“We’re always here to help people and reach out to those that need help,” he said.

“It helps the hockey players become men, the more we give back the more they have a sense of life outside of hockey.”

To qualify for the program, men need to live in Greater Victoria, be between the ages of 35 and 65, active less than two and a half hours per week, a pant size of 38 inches or greater and a body mass index of 25 or higher.

For more information or to register visit hattrick.ok.ubc.ca or call 250-807-9907.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter


Just Posted

Two to hospital after University of Victoria sailing mishap

Wind gusts capsize boat of recreational club sailors

Victoria’s deaf community advocates for different sign languages to be recognized on federal accessibility act

Advocates also want Indigenous Sign Language to be recognized on the Indigenous Language Act

Transport Canada announces funds for pollutant clean up in Victoria Park, removal of abandoned boats

Contaminants at Laurel Point Park will be removed starting at the end of September

Volunteers gather in Metchosin for B.C.’s 1st ever search and rescue joint training

Around 200 volunteers came out for the three-day training program

Seeing double, the trials and tribulations of twins

BIG READ: Three Vancouver Island mothers share their experiences with multiple births

United Way asks Victoria to share local love

2018 campaign aims to raise another $5M

5 things to do this weekend in and around Greater Victoria

Sooke Apple Fest returns, Saanich lights up with lantern festival and anarchists unite for downtown book fair

Lions earn stunning 35-32 OT win over Ticats

Epic comeback lifts B.C. past Hamilton in CFL thriller

Czarnik nets 3 as Flames dump Canucks 5-2

Calgary picks up exhibition win over Vancouver

Ottawa to name new ambassador for women, peace and security, Freeland says

Chrystia Freeland also confirmed Canada would spend about $25 million to fund number of initiatives

‘A little bright spot:’ Ottawa residents rescue dog trapped beneath rubble

Freelance journalist says rescue of a dog trapped under rubble was happy ending amid chaos in Ottawa

VIDEO: B.C.-born firefighter remembered by MP in emotional speech

Family asks first responders to look after one another in wake of suicide, growing concerns of PTSD

Airline has ‘close call’ with drone while en route to B.C. airport

Jazz Aviation reported the drone sighting near Vancouver to the RCMP and Transport Canada

Most Read