If you’re considering a weight loss camp for your child, there’s a good chance you’ve heard the term “fat camp”. Wellspring is absolutely not a fat camp, and it’s important to us that you understand why we’re different from other camps in the area.
Fat Camps Do Not Teach Long-Term Lifestyle Change
At Wellspring Pennsylvania, your child will have 3 sessions per week with a Masters- or Doctoral-level Behavior Coach. The last thing we want is for you to make an investment in your child’s health, only to have him or her return to the same habits that initially led to the weight issue. Therefore, we make sure to take advantage of the physical changes in your child to spark emotional and behavioral changes as well. Many parents are amazed at how much happier, mature and energetic their child is after camp. These changes are a direct result of the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy program we follow at Wellspring.
In contrast, fat camps focus only on the physical changes that occur through weight loss. Your child will lose weight at a fat camp due to the structured environment and restricted food. But what happens after camp? Will your child have a new set of skills and habits – as well as sufficient commitment and resilience to continue with weight loss independently? Or will you need to reassume your former role as “food police?
“The Wellspring program is a wonderful program! All of the coaches have been extremely supportive and they really play such an important role with the kids! They go beyond the call of duty. This has been a great experience for both me and Alexis. Thank you so much. I only wish I would have known earlier.”
-Rene C., Gibsonia, PA, mom of Wellspring Pennsylvania Camper
Fat Camps Do Not Involve Families
While at Wellspring Pennsylvania, your child will learn a whole new way of thinking about food and activity. We want you to be able to support your child’s changes as thoroughly as possible. At our Family Workshops, you’ll learn how to live the Wellspring Plan yourself, so you and your child can communicate using the same vocabulary and you can role model the Plan for your child. Many parents report the added bonus of losing significant weight themselves through the training they receive at our Family Workshops.
At a traditional fat camp, family members are not involved in any part of the process, other than visiting camp to see their child. This leaves campers in the uncomfortable position of returning home without knowing how to share their camp experience with family members, or how to communicate the elements of their new lifestyle plan.
Fat Camps Do Not Provide Tools for Motivation
At Wellspring Pennsylvania your child will learn concrete tools for continuing with weight loss. A key to this process is connecting with the motivation to lose weight. Many campers have tried unsuccessfully to lose weight so many times before Wellspring that they’ve lost interest in trying. At Wellspring, the plan campers follow is simple and fun, leading to immediate weight loss. While they are losing weight, they are also learning core self-regulatory skills proven to be effective for long-term weight control such as self-monitoring and setting daily activity goals. This process (and the corresponding weight loss results) are discussed with trained, credentialed Behavioral Coaches so that campers learn to understand the connection between their actions, thoughts and behaviors. In addition, we use the Wellspring Level System, rewarding campers with tangible incentives for actively participating in camp activities and self-monitoring.
At fat camps, campers are often forced into activity, with no focus or discussion surrounding the thoughts and beliefs that lead to an active versus an inactive lifestyle. Without this understanding, campers are very likely to return to inactivity at home, and to return to fat camp again next summer.
Wellspring Pennsylvania is more than just a summer camp. Our weight loss camps are one branch of an integrated weight loss program led by top researchers in weight management and adolescent weight loss. We’re proud of what we do and would love to give you additional information about how we differ from fat camps. Please call us at 866.364.0808, or read more about fat camps and how Wellspring is different.