By Oscar Padilla, BA Sports Medicine, PT,CSCS
This event was held to bring awareness for National Childhood Obesity Awareness in the month of September by Weiser Memorial Hospital. We focused on Nutrition and Physical Activity.
Outperform Obesity was held on September 24th from 10am-12pm at the Weiser High School (Auxiliary gym). We opened the doors for sign-ups at 9:45am. The event started at 10am and we began with a quick warm-up by running around the track to get the kids’ heart rates up. Afterwards, we gathered all the kids together for an icebreaker to introduce themselves: name, age, and where they were from.
First, we talked about what Nutrition is, what a good nutritional diet consists of (protein, carbs, fats), what the benefits of eating healthy are, how to apply it, and asked them some follow up questions about what they like to eat. We then broke up into different stations to do more hands-on and interactive activities pertaining to nutrition, so the kids had more of a visual understanding of what I talked about. Next, we had a break so kids could use the restroom.
Then, we gathered everyone up for the second part of the event which was Physical Activity. We started off with a small low-impact workout for 10 minutes that I created for the kids. It is one that they were able to take home to do on their own and use. Once we had the heart rates up and kids breaking a little sweat – I had them all gather around to the board to talk about Physical Activity benefits: what are all different types of ways of being physically active, how much do they need daily, and how to apply it. I then asked them how they stayed physically active right now.
Finally, we went into a Nutritional Physical Activity game called “Nutritional Relay.” There were 6 different baskets on the other half of the basketball court (proteins, carbs, fats, limited food, vegetables, fruits). The kids were split into teams – each team had a pile of pictures of food from all categories, and the goal was to put the food in the correct basket. The team that put all their food in the basket first won. The objective of this game was to get the kids to apply what they learned about nutrition while also applying physical activity in a fun way.
I think this is the best approach to promoting better health overall for kids – by demonstrating that you could be healthy and have fun. Being healthy does not have to feel like a chore, but a beneficial habit that can improve your overall quality of life, especially starting at a young age. I hope this showed them how to apply it in an optimal and fun way that improves behaviors that this society does not promote.
At the end of the event, each kid was then sent home with a “Swag Bag.” Each bag had a variety of healthy snacks and gifts from doners locally and nationwide. Big thank you to all the donors who contributed! Without your investment this event would have not been so impactful for the kids. Also, a big thank you to all volunteers that came out to help everything go accordingly, I could have not done this alone. I think that is the most important part about this event – having community members coming together as one to improve the overall quality of the lives of our community mentally, physically, and spiritually. This is especially important for the younger generations because we are the role models for the kids. They pick up on what we do, so we must make sure what we do is be the best example to our kids in those areas.
Thank you to everyone who came out to support! We hope to make this an annual event!