Jeff Barnett / Lantern photographer
Weight-lifting competitions determine who is the strongest and marathons tell who is the fastest, but who are the “most fit” students on campus?
Most competitions focus on one element of fitness, such as sheer strength or cardiovascular endurance, but a new competition is being introduced to Ohio State students that will promote a more well-rounded fitness.
Faculty from the health and exercise science department teamed up with the students’ Exercise Science Club to create a course that would determine the overall best fit male and female at OSU.
The university’s first “Most Fit Buckeye” competition is scheduled to be held from 9 a.m. until about 4 p.m. on April 16 at the Lincoln Tower Park. More than 100 competitors are expected to compete in the event, and spectators are welcome, said Rick Petosa, a professor in health and exercise science.
“All the components of fitness are really what drives our major and is what is going to be driving this competition,” said Elan Lieber, Exercise Science Club president and a third-year in exercise science education. “The ‘most fit Buckeye’ is not going to be the person who is the most strong or most fast, it’s not the person who just trains one way, but it’s the most well-rounded, the most healthy (man and woman).”
To come up with challenges for the course, the Exercise Science Club split into eight sections and each focused on one element of fitness, such as strength, aerobic fitness and balance.
“The competition consists of cardiovascular efficiency, muscular endurance, balance, flexibility, cognitive problem solving and strategy, to complete a wide range of challenges presented in a fitness course,” said Petosa, who worked with the club to create the event.
Four athletes at a time will compete in different lanes, each round striving for the top time. The four men and four women with the best times will compete against each other in the last round on the last race of the day.
Some of the obstacles included on the course are a weighted sled-pull, a tire flip, agility drills, running and plyometric boxes, which the competitors will jump up and down from in rapid succession.
The layout of the course is not being disclosed until the competition. This adds intrigue for competitors such as Cory Scheadler, a second-year graduate teaching assistant in physical activity and education services.
“I’ve tried to ask (Lieber) a couple times, but he’s been pretty secretive about it … I’m pretty curious to what it is that I’m going to be doing,” Scheadler said.
David Steel, a fourth-year in history, has signed up for the competition because it sounds fun.
“Back when I was going to elementary school, running around in the gym, the gym teacher set up an obstacle course and I always had a blast with those, so I just figured it would be one of those on steroids,” Steel said.
The sign-up sheet to compete in the “Most Fit Buckeye” competition is located at the Cardio Canyon desk in the RPAC building from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. every night.
The competition has a $20 entrance fee. All proceeds from the competition will be donated to Pelotonia, a cancer-fighting and fitness-promoting charity. The most fit male and female in the competition will both win new iPads, Petosa said.
Along with the competition, there will be booths for spectators and competitors to visit. Muscle Milk, a sponsor for the event, will have a booth and give away its product. Other booths include a nutrition stand, which will be educating on matters such as portion control, and a booth where one can measure his or her actual percentage of body fat, not just body mass index weight.