"Eat Well, Play More" kicks off with kids

Schools in the area are helping you and your children make healthy lifestyle changes with the help of The Coordinated School Health of Tennessee.

Did you know that Tennessee has the second highest obesity rates in the nation? At 69% we are tied with Alabama and because of these numbers the state is taking action, starting with children.

It's a new twist on the morning routine for kids at Woodland Elementary School in Oak Ridge.

Blair King, director of The Coordinated School Health of Tennessee says, "All the kids come here about 7:30 in the morning and it last to about 8 and all the kids are doing biometrics, body weight training and it's all designed for them. It just gets them active up early in the morning they're here 30 minutes before school starts "

It's called Mornings in Motion, where kids get active with the help of Next Level Training. Devin Driscoll, owner says "Oh man the kids are jacked up about it when they get here-- they wake me up sometimes so I don't need coffee on Tuesday and Thursday--and the great thing is the kids come in and work hard for me"

So it seems to be a good work out for the kids. Jerry Eaton a 3rd grader tells us that one of his favorite things to do are circles with his arm. After he is done with the circles he says that his arms do hurt a little but it helps him build up a sweat and get moving in the morning.

The Coordinated School Health of Tennessee is now taking a proactive approach to healthy lifestyles with a five year plan called "Eat Well, Play More".

Blair King says "This was one of our higher school for obesity rates in children and we needed to do something here to make physical activity and healthy eating more the norm"

Devin Driscoll says, "My main goal is that they look at exercise and fitness as something other than a hassle--something for them to look forward too--I want this to be an event that they plan their week around and say okay if this is fun with him then I can do it on my own"

And it's an idea that people hope will catch on around the community.

King says "95% of our kids are in school whether it's daycare, schools and it's probably the most powerful place to reach a child and if we can educate them here we hope that carries over to the home life."

This is only the first of the 5 year plan which will include the entire state. The hope is to reduce obesity and chronic diseases by the year 2015.


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