Senior project focuses on exercise

Senior Guillermo Escalante manages his time between work, school and family. In his last semester as a physical education major, Escalante is developing a program to aid women in weight loss and muscle toning. Demonstrating an exercise to sophomore Brandi Baumeister, Escalante also works as a private trainer at a fitness club in Sherman Oaks. Ultimately, he plans to pursue a master's degree and become an orthopedic surgeon. / photo by Jamie Bigornia
Senior Guillermo Escalante manages his time between work, school and family. In his last semester as a physical education major, Escalante is developing a program to aid women in weight loss and muscle toning. Demonstrating an exercise to sophomore Brandi Baumeister, Escalante also works as a private trainer at a fitness club in Sherman Oaks. Ultimately, he plans to pursue a master’s degree and become an orthopedic surgeon. / photo by Jamie Bigornia

by Katrina Hall
Staff Writer

Senior Guillermo Escalante has taken on women’s fitness as the research topic for his senior project.

Escalante is a physical education major with an emphasis in athletic training and a biology minor.

The project, which started on Feb. 5, will end March 21.

Three hundred letters were sent out to female students and 15 were chosen randomly to do the experiment. They had to be between the ages of 18 and 23.

According to Escalante, the project is broken down into two components. They are aerobic capacity and body composition or body fat.

Aerobic capacity deals with the cardiovascular level of how much impact the body can take and body fat, which is tested with plastic tongs, tells how much fat is in the thighs, waist and triceps.

After gathering weight, height and age, there is a calculation of the percentage of how much body fat is in the body. The project consists of a pre-test and a post-test.

“For the pre-test, I chose three groups of five subjects randomly,” said Escalante. “The first group does a series of the exercise from a fitness video, the second group does exercise designed and instructed by myself and the third group is the control group.”

What Escalante is trying to see is how effective the video is compared to his personally designed exercise program.

Escalante’s program consists of using the tread mill, exercise bike, Stairmaster and free weights.

“Both exercise programs are designed to improve cardiovascular and body composition,” Escalante said.

Sophomore Brandi Baumeister, who is exercising in Escalante’s senior project said “I work out regularly, so for me, this is more of an opportunity to tone my whole body, opposed to just running. I’ve learned that not just working out the legs is important, but the whole body.”

He chose “The Firm Video” for the first group because it has been ranked first among six national fitness magazines and made millions of dollars.

“My hypothesis is that my exercise will prove to be more effective in the two components (aerobic capacity and body fat),” Escalante said.

The A and B groups exercise twice a week, one hour each day. The first group will do everything the instructor does on the video and the second group will do the exercises Escalante instructs. The third group does not exercise.

“At the end of the six week program, I will see how the first and second group compare in body fat and aerobic capacity,” said Escalante. “I will see if there is a statistically seen difference between both groups.”

Junior Katie O’Neil, who is also exercising, said the project has taught her a lot about how to use exercise equipment and how much activity is appropriate for her body. She hopes to continue exercising after the project is over.

The control group is not tested because Escalante is trying to see if women lose body fat even if they do not exercise.

He will conclude the project with a five-chapter paper starting with an introduction, then a review of literature and methodology. The other two chapters to be covered are a presentation of the results, recommendations and a summary.

According to Jim Paschal, physical education professor, the project is worth 75 percent of the senior project class grade.

Paschal says the students completing the senior seminar class are required to write a scholarly paper, develop a master thesis and present it before the P.E. faculty members as well as their peers.

The son of Manuel Escalante, professor of international marketing, Guillermo considers himself a versatile yet ambitious man. He was a competitive athlete in track and field during his freshman year and played football this past season, but suffered a knee injury.

Escalante is also the proud father of 17-month-old Nathan and husband of 22 months to Stephanie, 23.

In addition to his class load of 16 units, he is an assistant in the University of La Verne physiology lab under the direction of Dr. Terry Lepper, lab director and veterinarian.

Escalante is also head student athletic trainer for the men’s basketball team, a personal trainer and will work as an athletic trainer for spring sports.

He is also in the process of applying to medical school. The schools he hopes to be accepted to are UC Davis and Johns Hopkins Medical School in Maryland, for the fall of 1997. He will also start classes for a masters of business administration in April of this year.

“It is essential to have a business background to survive in the medical field today,” he said.

Katrina Hall
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Jamie Bigornia
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