WPS supports Cycle For Stroke event in Madison

MADISON, Wis.—Feb. 15, 2019—WPS executive Scott Kowalski is leading a major event in Madison this spring to raise awareness for stroke and heart disease.

Cycle For Stroke will be held on the evening of May 8 at Breese Stevens Field in downtown Madison. Four-person teams will compete on stationary bikes for a total of two hours (30 minutes per person).

WPS Health Solutions is one of the sponsors. The event is geared toward company sponsorship, but individuals can form a four-person team, with a minimum team fundraising goal of $1,000. The overall goal is $100,000 for this year’s event. Funds will benefit community programs that help prevent stroke and heart disease.

Gates open at 5 p.m. and the ride starts at 6 p.m. There will be costume and jersey competitions, prizes, music, food, and beverages.

For more information, go to CycleNation.org/Madison or contact Camilla Jackson at Camilla.Jackson@heart.org.

Scott’s personal connection: This is the 5-year anniversary of Scott Kowalski’s stroke, and that’s a big reason why he is an advocate for a heart-healthy lifestyle. (See this WPS Health Blog, where Scott is featured.)

On May 12, 2014, Scott suffered a stroke caused by a previously unknown heart condition. He had just pulled into his driveway at home. Without warning, his left side became paralyzed and he collapsed.

“I had no risk factors for stroke. Unknown to me, I had a heart condition, PFO (patent foramen ovale), which is a hole in my heart. One in four people have this and may not even know it,” Scott said.

Thankfully, Scott fully recovered and, since then, he has worked to make others aware of heart risks and how to identify a stroke.

He has been a member of the American Heart Association–Wisconsin Board for several years and currently is serving as its chair, and he is chair of the Cycle For Stroke event in Madison.

Health benefits: Cycling is not only good for your heart, but it can help maintain strong brain function, processing speed, and mental sharpness.

Good timing: Cycle For Stroke in Madison coincides with National Stroke Awareness Month.

Know the warning signs: Cycle For Stroke in Madison coincides with National Stroke Awareness Month.

Watch for these signs of stroke: Someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds, on average. One of the best ways to educate yourself is to know the warning signs and symptoms. F.A.S.T. stands for:

  • Face drooping
  • Arm weakness
  • Speech difficulty
  • Time to call 9-1-1