W. Ky. elementaries use Baptist Health grants to join national program to fight childhood obesity; results encouraging

Two more West Kentucky schools have joined Project Fit America, a fitness program that targets childhood obesity, to help its students become more fit, reports The Paducah Sun.

East Calloway County and Calvert City elementary schools are the seventh and eighth schools in the area to win a $16,500 grant from Baptist Health Paducah for indoor and outdoor fitness equipment, teacher training and curriculum material, all included with the Project Fit America program.

“We believe as educators it is our responsibility to help our young population begin healthy lifestyles that will follow them into adulthood,” Kathy Crouch, East Calloway principal, told the Sun.

Kentucky ranks eighth in child obesity, and U.S. adult obesity is expected to grow from 30 percent of the population now to 60 percent by 2030.

Benton Elementary, which joined the program only last year, has already documented improvement in students’ fitness, showing a a 27 percent increase in cardiovascular endurance, 18 percent increase in upper body strength, 12 percent increase in abdominal strength and a 38 percent increase in students who could perform pull-ups.

Project Fit America is a national non-profit group that has worked with nearly 900 schools in 45 states to motivate students, parents and faculty to choose fitness over sedentary lifestyle habits. (Read More. This article is behind a pay wall.)

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