hEALTH AND NUTRITION EDUCATION SERVICES for FAMILIEs / childcare providers / ECE / healthcare providers 

Educational techniques used in the Back in Whack Program take into consideration the cognitive and developmental levels of the participant.  Therefore, two versions of the program available - Back in Whack for Kids (appropriate for children ages 6 through 11) and Back in Whack for Teens (appropriate for ages 12 through 18). 

The program is available in four different formats: 1) The clinic-based program which is only available in Lander and Riverton, Wyoming at Fremont County Pediatric Clinic; 2) The home-based program is available to anyone who wants to order a Back in Whack Home Pack; 3) The group program includes a group facilitator manual and can be utilized in several different types of youth groups; and 4) The blended program combines the clinic-based program with the home-based program. The blended program is available for medical clinics and public health agencies to use as a intervention for overweight and obese children and teens. 


The body should convert food that is eaten into energy which will be used up during the day to move and heat the body. However, sometimes a person’s energy balance gets OUT OF WHACK and the body starts storing too much energy from the food that is eaten. When this happens on a regular basis, the body ends up with excess amounts of stored energy, resulting in a high Body Mass Index (BMI) and an unhealthy weight.  This program is designed to help children and teens get their energy balance BACK IN WHACK. 

Children and teens who complete the Back in Whack Program are successfully adopted healthier eating and lifestyle habits and are lowering their body mass index. It is not just the youth who are making healthier changes. Whole families are adopting healthier eating and lifestyle habits as a result of their child or teen’s participation in the program.

The Wyoming Department of Health is utilizing the home-based version of the Back in Whack Program which has made the program available to children and teens across the state of Wyoming. Parent testimonials are pouring into the health department with reports about healthy habits that youth and whole families are adopting as a result of the Back in Whack program.

The Wyoming Department of Health is not the only agency that has taken notice of the Back in Whack program. The Back in Whack program recently received the 2015 Community Award from the National Association of Nutrition Professionals for being a program that is having a positive impact on the health of our nation.

Laurie Jean Ellis, MS, BSN, RN, CHC is the author of the Back in Whack Program. Click HERE to learn more about Laurie.

The BACK in WHACK Program

Back in Whack is a pediatrician approved weight management program for children and teens.   The program utilizes teaching techniques that facilitate optimal learning. This program provides a variety of hands-on activities and tools, self-discovery exercises, treasure hunts, field trips, and activities that promote ownership in the learning process. During the program, youth develop their own personal health and nutrition plan as they work through the program materials. This program is family friendly and contains multiple ideas and activities to get the whole family involved in adopting healthier eating and physical activity habits. 

The Back in Whack Program is an evidence-based program (based on research findings). Research studies have proven that successful pediatric weight management programs contain four vital components: nutrition plan with education, physical activity, behavioral change (habit change), and parent training. The Back in Whack Program contains all four of these vital program components.

Learning how to eat healthier is easy.  Adopting healthier eating habits is hard. Back in Whack is a uniquely successful program due to the fact that the behavioral change component is the foundation of the program. Children and teens learn how to use several different habit change skills and tools which makes habit change easier and produces long-lasting healthy habits.