- Position: Assistant Professor
- Department: Exercise Science and Community Health
- Office Location: Building 72, Room 241
- Campus: (850) 474-2050
Dr. Christopher Wirth, assistant professor, teaches physical education for teachers, and personal and community health.
Wirth’s research interests in physical education has converged with the field of community health promotion. During the past two years, he has been co-coordinator of a community program called Let’s Wiggle with 5-2-1-0, a strategic initiative sponsored by Live Well Northwest Florida that promotes physical activity in classroom settings. This pilot program is part of a long-term initiative to improve the overall wellbeing of Escambia county residents.
Wirth and Alexandra Venezia, a research associate at UWF, fostered community engagement by conducting training workshops, initiating parent contact and providing onsite visits. He worked closely with 15 area preschools to design a curriculum that trains child-care providers on 15 activities they can incorporate into their daily academic routines, such as during circle time, reading or even picking up toys. Preliminary findings have shown that kids who are active throughout the day are more focused during structured on-task learning time. The next step is to develop a phone app that provides activities that could be used at home.
He has given poster presentations on different aspects of the Let’s Wiggle with 5-2-1-0 program at national and international conferences, including Active Living Research Annual Conference and International Association for Physical Education in Higher Education.
In addition to his presentations, he has also written articles and journal reviews on physical activity and health promotion.
He received a bachelor’s degree in physical education from the University of Wyoming, and master’s in sport pedagogy, and doctorate in health and human performance from University of Florida.