Shared from the 10/14/2017 Mon Valley Independent eEdition

Monessen woman brings fitness program to Valley

Volkssporting began in Germany in the 1960s, and has gained popularity in the United States.

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Submitted Concerned with her own fitness level, Lori Lamberski established the Mon Valley Trailblazers Walking Club.

Lori Lamberski always wanted to improve her physical fitness level.

As a caregiver the past 10 years for her mother, Norma Lewis, who suffers from dementia and heart disease, Lamberski decided to do just that.

“I see myself and my health declining because she can’t be left alone,” Lamberski said of her mom. “I’m actually stuck, and all I do is eat. I don’t have anything else to get me involved actively.”

Aware other caregivers deal with similar problems, the Monessen woman sought a way to form friendships with them and others.

That led to creation of the Mon Valley Trailblazers Walking Club, a group of men, children and women working to create a healthy community. Lamberski is the club’s president.

Its mission is to “promote and organize noncompetitive fitness activities that encourage lifelong fun, fitness and friendship for all ages and abilities.”

The club is sanctioned by the American Volkssport Association.

The term volkssport means “sport of the people.” It promotes organized events for the general public.

Participants go at their own pace while taking part in five types of events: walking, biking, swimming, skiing and snowshoeing or roller skating.

Volkssporting began in southern Germany in the early 1960s and has risen in popularity in the United States, starting in Fredericksburg, Texas, in 1976.

Lamberski established the Mon Valley club July 3 because the closest volkssporting event in Pennsylvania is in the Harrisburg area.

Steubenville, Ohio, is the closest to the west.

Lamberski was introduced to volkssporting in San Antonio, where she resided for 15 years.

Volkssporting’s national headquarters is in Texas.

While learning about volkssporting activities and related health benefits, she realized it brings families together.

“When I lived in San Antonio, I would take my children with me on the weekends, and the events were always at a different venue,” Lamberski said.

“And that’s the same with up here with different hiking and walking (venues).

“After the walk, we would actually stay at the park and have a picnic.”

A number of year-round and seasonal events are planned through the rest of this year and into 2018.

“You have different events; you have a traditional, where you set up tables and have a start and a finish (line),” Lamberski said. “Then, you have a seasonal, which runs from a certain date to a certain date every year, and you have year-round (events) that are from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31.” The next activity will be a traditional event on Dec. 9 for the Twin Lakes 5K and 10K walk, which will include a side trip to Overly’s Country Christmas Village at the Westmoreland Fairgrounds in Mt. Pleasant Township.

Some traditional events next year include 5K and 10K walks at Cedar Creek Park in Rostraver Township, Ohiopyle State Park and Mingo Creek Park in Union Township.

A seasonal snowshoe event is scheduled from January to March at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Wharton Township, Fayette County. Members can obtain distance books to track the number of kilometers they walk and events in which they participate.

To get involved, call 724-858-5965 or go to www.mvtrailblazers.com.

See this article in the e-Edition Here