Teaching kids to get fit

 Giving back to our community is a value we hold in high regard at The Center. Each member of our team is encouraged to take two days off from work each year to make a difference. Our own Angela Palacios did that at her daughter’s school where she helped spread her love of fitness.

As many of you may know, I have a strong passion for physical fitness in my life.  It isn’t always easy to stay motivated and to fit it in with the hustle and bustle of the daily schedule, but I make it a priority and always have since I was about 13 years old.  I like to think this has not only had a positive influence on my life, but also that of my family and friends when I encourage them to join me in one way or another.

I feel fitness is an important lesson that I want to pass along to by daughter who is 6.  From a very young age we have tried to make exercise a fun, daily occurrence.  It isn’t always easy to get her to exercise but it is easy to get her to go to ice skating, dancing, gymnastics, swimming and golf or even just riding her scooter when I take the dog for a walk.  As a result she is a very fit little girl with great coordination.  So when the opportunity came up to visit her school and try to help bring these habits into other kids’ lives, I felt like that was a natural fit for me.

Each year her school participates in the Presidential Physical Fitness Testing in the spring.  However, each fall they do a training session for the kids so they know where they are and what they need to focus on improving.  I think this is a great program that is unique to her school (or at least I had never heard of it before) and could not happen without parent volunteers.  

I have participated twice and both times the kids have energized me.  I have worked with kids from my daughter’s first grade class all the way up to the eighth graders.   We taught them the mechanics of stretching, endurance and strength training in a fun way.  Young children are inherently physically fit just from playing on the playground.   So parents, encourage your kids to go outside and play and most importantly just have fun, which is also a great lesson for us adults to remember.  If you love doing it you will stick with it and experience life-long benefits!