Kick Butts Day urges smokers to shake habit

Beck Diefenbach

Beck Diefenbach

By Lisa Chung

National Kick Butts Day will be observed Wednesday as part of “Spring into Health Day” offered by the Campus Recreation’s Wellness Services. To celebrate, students will be encouraged to trade in their smoking paraphernalia for a goody bag from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at CRCE.

According to the National Kick Butts Day Web site, it is a campaign that works towards educating people about the negative health effects of tobacco use, while also advocating effective tobacco prevention policies among non-users.

Although the day is aimed toward younger kids, having it at CRCE may be able to give some students the willpower to quit, said Nicole Kouzoukas, a senior in AHS and an intern for Wellness Services.

“It’s important for smokers to take the initiative of quitting by actually throwing away their smoking paraphernalia,” Kouzoukas said.

Everyone who wants to quit smoking tends to put it off and say they will quit tomorrow or the next week, she said.

As a national holiday, many may be further motivated to quit.

There will be bins to collect smoking paraphernalia from students in which they will receive a reward.

The items included will help people kick their habit of smoking, such as gum, Kouzoukas said. Students will be able to make their own stress ball, which could also contribute to Kick Butts Day, she added.

Geoffrey Guiney, a junior in LAS, who has been smoking for two and a half years, said he needs more of an incentive than just a few helpful items to quit.

“People may go in and trade their cigarettes for the goody bag, but it’s not going to make them quit smoking,” Guiney said.

Kayla Baker, sophomore in ACES who has been smoking for about a year, shared a similar attitude.

“It’s like when people make a New Year’s resolution,” she said. “Just one day isn’t going to help people quit smoking.”

Kouzoukas is unsure if people will quit smoking “cold turkey.” But, she thinks it may still serve as a good starting point. She added that she hopes people may decide to cut back on smoking, even if they don’t quit with this day.

This year marks the 11th annual National Kick Butts Day. However, there has only been mention of it on campus until Kouzoukas decided it would be a good add-in to “Spring into Health Day,” which will be held outside of CRCE. Students can learn to improve their overall wellness and take advantage of free health services, Kouzoukas said.

“Spring into Health Day” will offer free fitness assessments from Campus Recreation’s personal trainers, healthy snacks prepared by SportWell dieticians, condoms provided by McKinley Sexual Health Peers and pointers on how to maintain an overall healthy lifestyle.