ST. GEORGE – The “Move It!” program, sponsored by the St. George Marathon and St. George Leisure Services, has spent the past two years fielding a dedicated team of volunteers and dispatching them to elementary schools to promote physical fitness and encourage an active lifestyle.
The program, which is in every elementary school in Washington County – including private and charter schools – is “designed to get kids up and moving,” said program coordinator, Brianna Rosia.
Each school has a team of one to four mentors who go into the schools during recess and urge those children who are sitting down to get up and play, said Rosia.
As an extra incentive to be active the children earn tokens for their athletic efforts that can be redeemed for prizes at any city kids race event or race expo.
In addition to playing at recess children have several other ways to earn tokens.
“They can earn them through their physical education teacher, by participating in any kids race event, or by filling out a calendar saying that they have exercised for 30 minutes a day,” said Rosia.
Calendars can be found on the “Move It!” Web page.
The program has been met with great support both from the mentors and from members of the community.
“It is such a worthwhile cause,” said Sarah Reber, a mentor for the program, “the excitement in the kids faces is wonderful and we are getting them healthy.”
Jamie Warden, whose children attend Heritage Elementary, is grateful for the program because it keeps her kids active, she said.
“It’s been great to have all these events to get them out and get them active,” said Warden.
The “Move It!” program kicks off its race series with its Marathon Kids, race. The race takes place every year on the day before the St. George Marathon and has seen a ton of growth in the past two years, said Rosia.
“The first race had about 50 participants,” Rosia said, “but in 2013 we had well over 500.”
Rosia is excited about the program’s growth and “looks forward to its future,” she said.
Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.
- To see a list of Move It sponsored events or to get an exercise calendar visit their web page
- Family fun and fitness
- Five simple ways to make fitness fun for your family
- Children on the move
- STGnews RUNdown: Every race in one place, Southern Utah upcoming events
- Southern Utah mountain biking, cycling events
Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2014, all rights reserved.