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Move more, live better: Embracing the power of physical activity

A Walktober spotlight article

Meet Tyler and Jenny, two employees from WashU’s Physical Therapy Clinic who are dedicated to promoting physical activity and supporting coworkers on their well-being journey. Tyler Detmer, PT, DPT a Wellness Champion and Clinical Associate and Orthopedic Team Lead, and Jenny Brown, Marketing, Recruitment and Public Relations Manager, share their insights and enthusiasm for an active lifestyle.

What We Love About Our Roles

When asked about their favorite aspect of their roles, Jenny shares her enthusiasm for the different types of people with whom she interacts. She finds fulfillment in assisting PhD students, clinicians, and faculty members. “I’m always meeting new people,” she says with a smile. Tyler echoes her sentiments, highlighting the unique blend of patient care and community outreach that his role offers.

Beyond Work: Personal Commitment to Movement

Jenny Brown with daughter, Harper, and dog, Molly, on a recent walk at Dardenne Greenway.

Outside of their professional roles, Tyler and Jenny lead by example when it comes to staying active. Jenny likes to take walks with her young children and trusty canine companion and ride her bike on trails like Dardenne Greenway in O’Fallon, MO, Garden Greenway, and the Katy Trail. Tyler takes his physical activity to the next level, regularly engaging in 20-mile bike rides and half-marathon running. Their personal commitment to movement reflects their dedication to living a healthier lifestyle.

The Bike/Run/Walk Club: Your Path to Active Living

Tyler also leads the Bike/Run/Walk Club, and they are always welcoming new members. The club typically meets once a week or every other week, gathering at the corner of Euclid and Clayton. From there, they journey into Forest Park, accommodating various preferences, whether you prefer biking, running, or walking, with routes spanning from 3 to 6 miles.

The club is open to all WashU employees, although the starting point is located on the School of Medicine Campus. Forest Park’s scenic trails and loops provide an ideal setting for members to explore at their own pace, and the club is designed to accommodate individuals of all skill levels. Having Tyler or another physical therapist present during club activities ensures guidance and support, making it accessible and enjoyable for everyone.

The Bike/Run/Walk Club registration is currently open and will continue to recruit new members during the winter season. Tyler and Jenny intend to rejuvenate the club during springtime to enhance the experience, cultivate a more cohesive community among members, and promote ongoing commitment.

Tyler Detmer, PT, DPT

The Expert Perspective: Benefits of Movement

Tyler advocates for the importance of movement in our daily lives, drawing from his professional expertise. He explains that anything we do will involve movement and underscores the connection between movement and purposeful life, citing the 8ight Ways to Wellness model as a tool to prevent health problems and ensure holistic well-being.

Encouraging a Culture of Movement

Tyler and Jenny emphasize the importance of making movement enjoyable when motivating patients and colleagues to incorporate physical activity into their daily routines. They suggest that physical activity should be viewed as a social endeavor and that people should engage in activities with those with whom they enjoy spending time. Tyler specifically highlights the positive impact of the walking initiative, which has introduced the concept of walking meetings and has encouraged employees to feel a sense of freedom and vitality.

Jenny stresses the importance of staying active and mentions the efforts made by Wellness Champion Sherry Lohmann to promote walking meetings and secure funding for personalized wellness solutions within PT. She also highlights the “link system” at the Med School as a convenient way to take a break and get some exercise by taking a few laps around the building, contributing to a culture of movement.

In conclusion, Jenny advises other departments to utilize the resources available within their teams, emphasizing the importance of supporting and encouraging one another in pursuit of a healthier lifestyle. Tyler echoes her sentiment, stressing the sense of freedom that physical activity can bring. He suggests getting leadership involved in activities like walks and building a culture of community where employees encourage each other to stay active.

At the end of the day, our health is the most important thing. Tyler, Jenny, and the team at the Physical Therapy Clinic set an example of how leading an active lifestyle can be both achievable and rewarding. As you read their story, we hope you will be inspired to embrace physical activity, explore the Bike/Run/Walk Club, take advantage of available resources, and join the movement towards a healthier, happier life. Let’s work together to improve our well-being and thrive as an engaged, active community.


Are you passionate about advocating for a healthy workplace culture? Consider joining the Wellness Champion network and connecting with a group of like-minded colleagues.

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