Dr. Turner believes that you have an inherent ability to be healthy, it’s just waiting to be unleashed, “activated” inside of them. Activating this inherent fitness also allows you to step into your power and unlock your true, most productive, most empowered self. You don’t naturally know how to be healthy, you have to learn how to be healthy. Learning is a combination of increasing health knowledge as well as helping you to develop the Healthy Lifestyle Skills critical to you living healthy, long-term. unconditionally.

Dr. Turner’s philosophy

1) Brain + Behavior = Body. Start with your head first, healthier behavior and body will follow.

2) KISS Yourself – Keep It Simple Sister/Son. Keep the process around engaging in health behaviors simple. Simplicity builds repetition, repetition helps to build habits.

3) Build Self-Efficacy – Confidence, a “can do” attitude. This will help you to continue to engage in the activity

4) You are the expert on YOU! – As a health coach and “fitness activator”, Dr. Turner is helping you to design a healthy lifestyle system that works for you!

5) Context is Everything– Your social and environmental context impact your thoughts and behavior which impact your health status. These factors must be taken into account when coaching you to better health.

Social and environmental context were also found to be a factor in my dissertation research.

Dissertation Research – Using a Multiple-Case Study Design to Evaluate the Implementation of the Healthy Schools Program at Select New Jersey Charter Schools

Given her interest in making communities healthier through health programming and policy, Dr. Turner’s dissertation evaluated the Healthy Schools Program (HSP) implementation at four, New Jersey, K-8 independent charter schools. Using the Diffusion of Innovation as the analytical framework, Dr. Turner sought to uncover the level of HSP implementation at each study school, and factors impacting that implementation (e.g., the charter school’s context, social and environmental factors both in and outside of the school that affected HSP implementation). Study results found the social determinants of health (e.g., economic stability, education, built environment) impacted HSP implementation in schools, as well as parent health behaviors, knowledge, and health status.

Consistent themes across all study schools were:

1) The need to improve parent health and parent health behaviors

2) The concept that schools were dealing with many other social externalities (e.g., poverty, domestic violence, incarceration, immigration stress) that impacted a student’s ability to learn. Teachers and administrators stated that schools were not just schools, they were “community centers” that were created to service the needs of the child, family, and the broader community. Schools needed to be resourced accordingly, but were dramatically underresourced, or did not have the right kind of resources.

As a follow-up to her dissertation studies and to deliver on her mission of health, Dr. Turner is working with New Jersey charter schools to make their school environments healthier. The current global health crisis has created an immediate need for parents and teachers to gain the support they need to learn how to be healthy, even during challenging times. Through a webinar series, Dr. Turner is working with various schools and community groups to help their constituents to learn how to be healthy unconditionally even in the face of adversity, achieving unconditional, empowered fitness, MAD COOL FITNESS!