RIVERTON - In 2017, only 25 percent of adults surveyed in Cherokee County reported available access to exercise opportunities. Research indicates that regular physical activity can improve mental health, reduce risk of developing diabetes or cancer, and can help improve the quality of life of an individual. Individuals residing in rural Kansas often encounter additional obstacles to exercise including limited access to sidewalks, financial barriers, and inclement weather.

Spring River Mental Health and Wellness strives to improve the overall health of local citizens and identified the barriers that are present that keep citizens from improving their health. They work to provide opportunities to improve the mental, physical, and overall health of individuals to improve quality and longevity of life. In 2010, Spring River Wellness Center was opened and is located on the Spring River Mental Health and Wellness campus, north of Riverton.

Spring River Wellness Center is a fitness center equipped with community storm shelters, meeting rooms, gymnasium, weight room, and fitness rooms. The fitness center offers opportunities for all local citizens with membership options, day passes, and personal training. Spring River Wellness Center offers a full size indoor basketball court with walking lanes around its perimeter. In order to improve access to physical activity, community members are welcome to walk on the indoor walking track free of charge 6 to 11 a.m. Monday through Friday. Local citizens now have walking access in a safe, climate-controlled gymnasium to use on a regular basis for free.

If you are interested in finding out more information regarding free indoor walking, exercise classes, or membership options please feel free to contact Spring River Wellness Center at (620) 848-2390.

Numerous companies, social groups, and individuals throughout the county have identified making wellness a priority for their employees, youth, and peers has long-term benefits including improved health, increased productivity, and enhanced quality of life. The Health and Wellness Advocates of Cherokee County need your help in highlighting the organizations throughout the county that are making health and wellness a priority. Please nominate a Cherokee County Health Champion by emailing or calling Christina Holmes at ChristinaHolmes@ksu.edu or 620-429-3849.

Kansas State University is committed to making its services, activities and programs accessible to all participants. If you have special requirements due to a physical, vision, or hearing disability, contact Christina Holmes, Cherokee County Extension, 124 W. Country Rd, Columbus, KS 66725, phone 620-429-3849 or email ChristinaHolmes@ksu.edu.