Monday, April 7, 2014

Beware of the chair: break up long periods of sitting time for optimal health

ParticipACTION's third annual Sneak It In Week
 inspires Canadians to move more at work
TORONTO, Ontario April 7, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - Canadian adults spend 9.5 hours per day – almost 70 per cent of their waking hours – being sedentary. Much of this time is spent sitting at work, or in cars commuting to and from work.  But, it's time to beware of the chair.  Excessive time spent sitting increases the risk of diabetes and heart attack, and causes high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, sore backs and foggy brains.
To help Canadians break up time spent sitting and become more physically active throughout their workdays, ParticipACTION is encouraging them to stand up for their health – literally – during its third   annual Sneak It In Week, which runs from April 7 to 11. The campaign calls on Canadians to take active breaks and "sneak in" 10-minute increments of physical activity throughout their workdays to reap the reward of a longer, happier, more fulfilling life.
"Longer commutes, demanding work schedules and living in a sedentary culture mean we are sitting more and moving less," says Elio Antunes, President and CEO of ParticipACTION. "So, let's break up that sedentary behaviour with a little movement—and remember that the more you move, the better off you'll be.  Get your heart beating faster for just 10 minutes and it really counts."
Research shows that 10-minute bouts of physical activity not only break up sedentary time, but are an effective way to increase fitness and meet the recommended 150 minutes of heart-pumping physical activity recommended for adults per week.  Finding opportunities to fit physical activity into your workday may be easier than Canadians realize.
"Start by wearing your sneakers to work this week so you'll feel more compelled to fit active time into your day," says Antunes.  "You don't have to hit the gym for an hour.  You can reap all the health benefits of meeting the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines by regularly fitting in a power walk at lunch or parking further away and walking those extra blocks to and from work."
Some other creative ideas to sit less and move more at work include:
  • Standing up during meetings or while on the phone
  • Sitting on an exercise ball instead of a chair
  • Taking regular breaks to stretch
  • Drinking extra water so you have to take frequent breaks to the restroom
  • Wearing a pedometer and starting a friendly competition with coworkers to see who can take the most steps in one day
  • Starting a lunchtime walking group
  • Grabbing coffee or lunch a few extra blocks away
  • Holding a walking meeting with colleagues
  • "Power shopping" to get active while running errands
Visit the Sneak It In page at for more tips.
Canadians are invited to share how they are sneaking it in at work this week on Facebook or via Twitter at #sneakitin.
About Sneak It In WeekParticipACTION created Sneak It In Week, which runs this year from April 7 to 11, to help encourage Canadians to sneak in daily physical activity breaks.  For more information on Sneak It In Week, or to download free posters, door hangers, desk signs and logos, please visit
About ParticipACTIONParticipACTION is the national voice of physical activity and sport participation in Canada. Originally established in 1971, ParticipACTION was re-launched in 2007 to help prevent the looming inactivity crisis that faces Canada. As a national not-for-profit organization solely dedicated to inspiring and supporting healthy and active living for Canadians, it works with its partners, which include sport, physical activity, recreation organizations, government and corporate sponsors, to inspire and support Canadians to move more. ParticipACTION is generously supported by Sport Canada. For more information, visit

Friday, March 14, 2014

Clara Hughes is now on the road to building a stigma-free Canada

"Clara's Big Ride for Bell Let's Talk begins: Six-time Olympian Clara Hughes starts in Toronto an unprecedented 110-day journey to build a Canada free of the stigma around mental illness, that will lead her to the Parliament Hill in Ottawa on July 1st. (CNW Group/Bell Canada)"

TORONTO, Ontario March 14, 2014 /Canada NewsWire Telbec/ - Six-time Olympian Clara Hughes has just begun her 12,000-kilometre bicycle journey around Canada in support of mental health, departing moments ago from Maple Leaf Square in downtown Toronto to the cheers of supporters and well-wishers.
It's the first day of Clara's Big Ride for Bell Let's Talk, an unprecedented 110-day journey to build a Canada free of the stigma around mental illness. Clara will visit communities big and small in every province and territory to grow the mental health conversation before concluding her epic Ride on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Canada DayJuly 1.
"Hey Canada, I'm on my way! By now I'm heading west on Wellington Street to CAMH (the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health) before hitting Lakeshore Boulevard on the road to Hamilton, the next stop on the Big Ride," said Clara before setting out on her epic journey. "I really appreciate everyone coming out to Maple Leaf Square to see me off, and I'm really looking forward to meeting and talking to so many more Canadians on our quest to create a stigma-free nation!"
"Studies show that in any given year, one in every five Canadians will suffer from some form of mental illness. But the stigma means that many will not seek the support they need. I encourage anyone who is struggling to reach out and ask for help," said the Honourable Lisa Raitt, Minister of Transport. "Clara is playing a large role in helping to gain awareness on this subject, we owe it to ourselves and to future Canadians to do our part as well."
Clara's Big Ride for Bell Let's Talk includes more than 200 events organized by schools, youth organizations and community groups in 95 communities from coast to coast to coast. Everyone is invited to take part in the Ride by attending a local event, joining the conversation at, or raising funds to support mental health programs in your local community.
"Everywhere Clara goes, local volunteers are organizing the events that will spread the conversation about mental health far and wide and make their own communities stigma free," said Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let's Talk. "We applaud these Community Champions who, together with our National Advisory Committee of mental health experts, are vital to the success of Clara's Big Ride and our goal of a stigma-free Canada."
To learn more, and to keep up with Clara's updates from the road on her personal blog, please Also available at the web site is the limited-edition official Clara's Big Ride jersey or technical t-shirt. Show your support for the Ride and for Kids Help Phone - $15 from the sale of each item will be donated to the national phone and online professional counseling service for young people across Canada.
During the first leg of the Big Ride through Ontario, Clara will visit the following communities:
  • Hamilton - March 14 and15
  • St. Thomas - March 15 and 16
  • Chatham - March 16 and 17
  • Windsor - March 17 and 18
  • Sarnia - March 18 and 19
  • London - March 19 and 20
  • Kitchener - March 20 and 21
  • Oshawa - March 21
  • Whitby - March 22
  • Peterborough - March 22 and 24
  • Kingston - March 24
  • Gananoque - March 25
  • Cornwall /Akwesasne- March 25 and 26
Clara's Big Ride returns to Ontario June 16 when she crosses from Manitoba on her way to Kenora. For more information on Clara's national route and all locations and dates, please visit
National Partners 
Clara's Big Ride is powered by the support of our National Partners - Aimia, BMO, Canadian Tire, Cisco, Lundbeck, President's Choice and Samsung - who are providing significant support for the Ride. Thanks to our partners, every dollar raised at community events or online during Clara's Big Ride will stay in the community where it's raised to support local mental health initiatives. For more information on our National Partners, please
Bell Let's Talk
The Bell Let's Talk mental health initiative is a national charitable program that promotes mental health across Canada with Clara's Big Ride for Bell Let's Talk, Bell Let's Talk Day, and significant funding for anti-stigma programs, care and access, research, and workplace best practices. To learn more, please visit

Monday, January 27, 2014

Canadians reveal their top Olympic Winter Game Moments

TORONTO, Ontario January 27, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - What were you doing when Canada won hockey gold in Vancouver? In a new survey, Canadians have named Sidney Crosby's Men's Hockey Gold winning goal in Vancouver as their favourite Olympic Winter Games Victory Moment. Tying for second place on the list were Joannie Rochette's inspiring figure-skating bronze and Alex Bilodeau winning Canada's first Gold Medal as a host nation in Vancouver.

The survey by Molson Canadian, an Official Supporter of the Canadian Olympic Team, found that when we see our athletes atop an Olympic Podium it brings our country together like few things can. More than a third (35%) of Canadians say they feel most proud to be Canadian when one of our athletes wins gold, compared to a quarter (25%) who feel that way when celebrating on Canada Day.

Emotional Gold

Olympic Gold Medals can make us pretty emotional too. A third of Canadians say they will likely cry or get choked up during the medal ceremony if Canada wins a Gold Medal in Sochi. More than a quarter (27%) of us will likely sing 'O Canada' in public.

"There's no feeling in the world like standing on an Olympic Podium representing your country," says Joannie Rochette. "In that moment you can feel an entire nation celebrating along with you." 

Celebrating Our Olympic Victories

The survey asked Canadians how they plan on celebrating our key achievements in Sochi. By far, our favourite way (identified by six in ten Canadians) of celebrating our Gold Medals will be at home with family and friends. Nearly half (47%) of us say we will likely raise a celebratory beer in the process.

In that spirit of celebrating together Molson Canadian is making its Victory Bottles available to Canadians for the first time, so we can celebrate our Olympic Victories during the Sochi Games the same way our athletes did in Vancouver. The bottles are 625 mL replicas of the three-litre versions presented to our athletes in Vancouver as a symbol of our gratitude for their achievements. They will be available at select retailers, bars and restaurants across Canada in January and February in single bottles.

Worth Losing Sleep Over
The survey yielded additional insights into how Canadians will be coping with the time difference posed by the Sochi Games and celebrating their key moments:
  • More than a third (34%) of Canadian hockey fans surveyed plan to give up sleep and 7% plan to call in sick or to skip work to catch key Olympic Hockey Games in Sochi;
  • If Canada wins a Gold Medal in Sochi some of the famous Canadians we'd like to share a beer with to celebrate, if given the opportunity, include Sidney Crosby (31%), Stephen Harper (12%) and Ron MacLean (10%).
About the Survey

From January 7 to January 9, 2014 an online survey was conducted among a sample of 1,500 Canadian adults (ages 18-64) who are also Angus Reid Forum panel members. The margin of error — which measures sampling variability — is +/-3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20. The sample was balanced by region according to the most recent census data. 

About Molson Coors Canada

Molson Coors Canada is the Canadian division of Molson Coors Brewing Company, a global brewer with operations in Canada, the U.S., the U.K. and Asia. The company proudly offers some of the most popular brands in Canada with an award-winning brand portfolio that includes Molson Canadian, Coors Light, Molson Export, Rickard's and Molson Canadian 67. Molson Coors also partners with other leading brewers to offer such global brands as Heineken, Corona and Miller Genuine Draft.

Molson Coors Canada employs 3,000 Canadians, operates seven breweries, including boutique breweries Creemore and Granville Island, and invests in communities from coast-to-coast through its various charitable initiatives and sports and entertainment sponsorships. Molson Coors Canada is committed to promoting its products and events in a responsible manner as part of an active, healthy lifestyle. 

Monday, January 6, 2014

LG's Lifeband and Heart Rate Earphones First Products in Company's Wearable Ecosystem

TORONTO, January 6, 2014 /Canada NewsWire/ - LG Electronics (LG) today took the wraps off LG Lifeband Touch and LG Heart Rate Earphones, two wearable products that mark the company's first foray into fitness tech. Unveiled at the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, both products incorporate comfortable designs and compatibility with other devices so that monitoring one's health requires no additional effort beyond strapping on a watch and inserting a pair of headphone earbuds.

Lifeband Touch is a smart activity tracker that incorporates a bold yet comfortable design and is compatible with heart rate monitors (HRM) as well as smartphones. Meanwhile, the innovative Heart Rate Earphones' unique dual-function design offers a convenient way for users to measure their heart rate while exercising. Both devices are designed to help users take greater control over their health. Lifeband Touch and Heart Rate Earphones can wirelessly link up to each other, creating a seamless wearable ecosystem. Connected to smartphones (Android and iOS supported), the devices can transmit data to the intuitive, easy-to-use LG Fitness app, or to a number of other third party apps such as MyFitnessPal, Runkeeper or MapMyFitness.

Lifeband Touch was designed to be asymmetric and flexible, providing greater comfort and style than other wearable fitness wristbands. Featuring a touch OLED panel to display time, biometrics, incoming calls and music controls, the built-in 3-axis accelerometer and altimeter allows the device to accurately measure key performance indicators such as distance, speed, number of steps, calories burned and projected pace. All this information is visible with a swipe of a finger on the OLED display. Engineered to be lightweight and simple to use, it incorporates a unique motion-sensing algorithm that automatically turns on the display when the wearer rotates his or her wrist. Lifeband Touch also offers wireless connectivity via Bluetooth to transmit data to a smartphone or receive data from third party devices such the Heart Rate Earphones.

LG's Heart Rate Earphones feature PerformTek® sensor technology which measures blood flow signals from the inner part of the ear to capture accurate biometric data such as heart rate and maximal oxygen consumption (VO2 max). As a continuous heart rate monitoring device, PerformTek® has proven accurate during rigorous physical activity. LG employs a flexible ear piece design to make its Heart Rate Earphones more comfortable to use than other similar monitoring devices. A clip-on medallion connected to the earphones provides Bluetooth connectivity, enabling the unit to send data to a smartphone or the Lifeband Touch for a truly seamless experience.

"We wanted to introduce wearable fitness products that met the expectations of today's tech savvy consumers and brought something new to the table, which in our case meant exceptional design, comfort and functionality," said Jim Clayton, executive vice president of LG's New Business Division in the Home Entertainment Company. "The uniqueness of our wearable devices is that they weren't just designed for exercise but also for day-to-day use in the office or around the home. With Lifeband Touch, you can get call and text notifications sent from your smartphone while the Heart Rate Earphones are perfectly happy playing back music all day even when you're not exercising. These are much more than just fitness devices."

 Lifeband Touch and Heart Rate Earphones will be available starting in the United States in the first half of 2014, to be followed by rollouts in other markets.

Connect with LG Canada on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

About LG Electronics Canada

The LG brand was established in 1995. The company is a global leader in electronics, information and communications products, with more than 117 operations around the world, and annual worldwide revenues of more than US $49 billion. LG Canada is comprised of five business units - Mobile Communications, Home Appliance, Home Entertainment, Business Solutions and Commercial Air Conditioning. The company has offices in Toronto and Vancouver. LG Canada is focused on delivering award-winning products known for blending style and technology. These innovative products include cell phones, flat screen TVs and home appliances. For more information please visit

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Canadian Government Supports Sport Development and Participation in Ontario

OTTAWA, December 19, 2013 /Canada NewsWire/ - The Honourable Bal Gosal, Minister of State (Sport), and the Honourable Michael Chan, Ontario Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, today announced contributions from the Government of Canada and Government of Ontario for sport development and participation in the province. 

"Working with provincial and territorial governments to advance important priorities for sport and physical activity in Canada is something our Government is proud to do. We want to make sport participation and athlete development a part of Canadians' everyday lives," said Minister of State Gosal. "Today's funding announcement clearly demonstrates that we are committed to working together with all levels of government to achieve this common goal. Sport participation and active living are important elements in keeping our communities and children healthy and active." 

"The Ontario government is pleased to partner with the Government of Canada to support organizations that deliver programs to encourage Aboriginal communities and people of all abilities to participate in sport and recreation programs," said Minister Chan. "By increasing opportunities for physical activity and encouraging participation, all in Ontario can become healthy, active and engaged in their communities."

 The three-year renewed bilateral agreement with Ontario involves a federal investment of $2,736,684 ($912,228 per year) with a matching contribution from Ontario, for a total of $5,473,368

Monday, November 25, 2013

Canadians need to close the gap: Research shows while most believe that sport promotes healthy living, few participate

RBC Sports Day in Canada gives Canadians from coast-to-coast the opportunity to participate in sport

TORONTO, November 25, 2013 /Canada NewsWire/ - New research shows that 95 per cent of Canadians believe that sport promotes healthy and active living, yet only 13 per cent participate in sport on a regular basis and just six per cent choose to spend time playing sports or being physical active over other activities such as watching TV or surfing the internet when they have free time. The survey, commissioned by ParticipACTION, Canada's national voice of physical activity and sport participation, is an important reminder that Canadians need to close the gap. They need to act on their beliefs and ensure they are living a healthy, active lifestyle. RBC Sports Day in Canada, which takes place on November 30, 2013, provides the perfect opportunity for Canadians to get active and participate in sport.

"Sport has the power to make individuals, communities and our nation stronger," said Kelly Murumets, President and CEO of ParticipACTION. "It provides a way for adults, children and youth to learn new skills, make new friends, and challenge themselves, all while becoming more physically active. ParticipACTION is committed to inspiring Canadians to get active and participate in sport so that all Canadians are leading healthier, more active lifestyles. RBC Sports Day in Canada is a great opportunity to get people engaged."

Canadians truly believe in the benefits of sport. In fact, 94 per cent of Canadians believe that sport helps build self-esteem and/or social skills. More than eight in 10 Canadians (88 per cent) believe sport can build and/or strengthen communities, and 86 per cent say that sport can foster a better and stronger society.

"Research tells us that the vast majority of Canadians believe that community-based sport can have a positive influence in the lives of our children and youth," said Karri Dawson, Director of True Sport Operations at the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport. "When sport is inclusive, fair, fun and fosters the pursuit of personal excellence, Canadians and the communities where they live can reap the benefits associated with a positive sport experience."

RBC Sports Day in Canada offers Canadians the opportunity to embrace the benefits of sport. In the week leading up to and including November 30, local organizations, communities and schools across the country will host over 1,400 sporting events and activities, open houses and try-it days that showcase sport at all levels.

National Jersey Day, on Friday, November 29, provides another opportunity for Canadians to show their love for sport by wearing a jersey, team or club uniform to school, work or play.

"We're thrilled to partner with ParticipACTION, CBC and True Sport for this national celebration to get Canadians, and especially kids, active and participating in sport," said Jane Broderick, Chief Brand and Communications Officer, RBC. "RBC recognizes the lifelong lessons gained through sport, and today, we announced RBC Learn to Play, an initiative to help improve the delivery of youth sport and recreation programs in communities across the country. Our Sports Day sponsorship and Learn to Play initiative are part of our larger commitment to improve the well-being of one million children and youth in Canada."

Get involved!

...Visit to watch RBC Sports Day stories and videos or to search for events in your area. Be on the lookout for elite athletes, politicians, Paralympians and Olympians who will make special appearances at some RBC Sports Day in Canada events across the country.

...Wear a jersey, team or club uniform to work, school or play on Friday, November 29 to celebrate national Jersey Day and show your love of sport.

Watch it live!

RBC Sports Day in Canada will be marked by a compelling broadcast event, live from Calgary, airing on CBC starting at 1pm ET on November 30. The broadcast, hosted by CBC Sports Weekend & Olympic host Scott Russell, will profile many standout community events that embody the RBC Sports Day experience.

About RBC Sports Day in Canada

RBC Sports Day in Canada, on Saturday, November 30, 2013, is a national celebration of sport, from grassroots to high-performance levels, in communities across Canada. The official day caps off a week of more than 1,400 local events and includes a special broadcast on CBC Television.

RBC is the new title sponsor of RBC Sports Day in Canada, which is presented by ParticipACTION, in partnership with CBC Television, ICI Radio-Canada Télé and True Sport, working in collaboration with national sporting organizations and their networks of coaches, athletes and sports enthusiasts across the country. RBC Sports Day in Canada is generously supported by Sport Canada and in BC through Healthy Families BC. For more information about RBC Sports Day in Canada, please visit:

About the survey

From November 1st to November 2nd 2013 an online survey was conducted among 1,006 randomly selected Canadian adults who are Angus Reid Forum panelists. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 3.1%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been statistically weighted according to education, age, gender and region (and in Quebec language) Census data to ensure a sample representative of the entire adult population of Canada. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

For a list of other events taking place across the country, please visit

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Yoga: The Art of Transformation

As the introduction to this exhibition from the Smithsonian's Sackler Museum points out,
"Yoga is a global phenomenon practiced by millions of people seeking spiritual insight and better health. Few, however, are aware of yoga's dynamic history."

Works from 25 museums and private collections located in the US, India, and throughout Europe have been borrowed in order to mount this show.

On the website, view 15 selected images that document yoga's centuries-long history through a variety of formats such as manuscripts; video - some of the earliest yoga instruction on film; painting; sculpture; postcards and publications.

For example, a Look Magazine cover from 1937 depicts Koringa, the mystery girl. Koringa was a magician and performer who adopted the characteristics of a yogini, a female practitioner of yoga. Koringa's image can be viewed in conjunction with an 11th century sandstone relief depicting an earlier Yogini as a powerful goddess.

There is also a map that plots the original locations where exhibition items were created.

Visit the site at:

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