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Get well soon!

A frisbee made by Wham-O.Image via Wikipedia

I was driving around downtown Des Moines last week, enjoying one of our rare 50-degree days in an unseasonably warm February. I couldn't help but notice the lack of public activity available downtown.

Now don't get me wrong, Des Moines has really improved and downtown and continues to. But it got me thinking about the importance of wellness opportunities within the young professional community. After all, YP athletic organizations are seeing a lot of momentum.

No matter the size of the city you live in, health and wellness (great blog!) is something necessary to a successful community. Gyms and other fitness programs are one thing. However, that isn't something visible.

Where can I drop what I'm doing to shoot some hoops, play some tennis or get a game of flag football going? What's a kid got to do to get a playground up in here?

I'm a big proponent of physical activity no matter how you choose to get it. Today's YPs make a good effort to stay active, which can be a big factor when choosing a place to live. There have even been whispers that Des Moines is focused on becoming a "wellness capital." That would be a big step in attracting a younger demographic to the state as well.

At work, you hear about it more and more. If your employer doesn't already have some sort of incentive package for staying in good health then I'm sure there is one coming your way. It's true, staying active relieves stress and happy people make better employees.

Here are a few things vital to having a culture of wellness to attract people to your city:

  • A central park: A place to throw a Frisbee or to knock a tennis ball around downtown.
  • An events schedule focused on wellness: Okay, so maybe you can’t run a marathon, but you can do the 5K!
  • Wellness center: Where are the healthiest places to eat around town? What intramurals can I join?
  • Incentive package: Cities need to be incenting businesses to incent their employees to be healthy and cut health care costs.
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