Iowa Games executive director Jim Hallihan says participation in an event to promote fitness amongst Iowa youth was much larger than he anticipated. Wednesday was designated as “Go the Distance Day” and school’s taking part had to design a program in which all the students were aerobically active for a half hour. Hallihan initially hoped nine thousand kids would take part, they ended up with 112 schools and 31-thousand kids participate. The names were drawn of five schools that participated to win a 500 dollar award for the physical education department. Ireton schools, Coon Rapids-Bayard, Colesburg elementary, Starmont middle school and Shenandoah elementary won 500 dollar prizes. Hallihan says programs like “Go the Distance” and “Lighten Up Iowa” allow these to promote good health to all Iowans. He says we have a major problem in our youth with inactivity.Tim Lane is with the Iowa Department of Public Health and says programs like these can hopefully stop some disturbing trends. He says in almost every health category, we’re seeing a deterioration of Iowa’s youth. Lane says poor habits have led to more injuries. He says over the last 30 years, the increase in the rate of fractures have increased by a percentage point per year. He says part of the problem is kids spending more time in front of computer and game screens, making them less active. He says we have to do everything we can as a state to turn things around.
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