Minister of Promoting Dynamic Engagement of All Citizens Katsunobu Kato visited the NPO Jukunen Taiiku Daigaku Research Center (JTRC) at Shinshu University on March 26th, 2016. The JRTC is currently popularizing its original Interval Walking Training (IWT) program of alternating periods of fast and slow walking to improve overall health.

The visit consisted of an IWT demonstration, briefing session, and reception at the Shinshu University Matsumoto Campus. Minister Kato first tried IWT with 35 participants. Later, in the briefing session, Professor Hiroshi Nose of the Institute for Biomedical Sciences and JTRC vice-president explained that physical fitness could improve by 20% by continuing IWT for 5 months and that 20% of medical expenses could be reduced. Afterwards, Minister Kato asked the participants who had been following IWT for 10 years how they continued the training for so long. Apparently satisfied with their answers, he stated to the press, “We will include how to promote and extend wellness in our plan for promoting dynamic engagement of all citizens.” Full details of the plan will be released in May. President of Shinshu University Kunihiro Hamada, Dean of the School of Medicine Shuichi Ikeda, and President of Matsumoto University Hiroyuki Sumiyoshi attended the visit as well.

Minister Kato taking part in “Interval Walking Training”

Minister Kato (front center) and members of the JTRC