The National Football League (NFL), USA Football, GENYOUth and Fuel Up to Play 60 are partnering to expand the Fuel Up to Play 60 NFL FLAG Essentials program.
Fuel Up to Play 60 is an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by the NFL and National Dairy Council, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Designed to increase physical activity among youth, the program will distribute NFL FLAG Essentials kits to 4,000 schools nationwide, reaching 1.5 million new students and doubling the number of resources provided in the first two years of the program.
With this commitment, the partners will have supplied approximately 8,500 schools nationwide, including in all 32 NFL club markets, with much-needed resources for their physical education programs since 2014, resulting in 3 million students getting active through NFL FLAG. The expansion was made possible by a $1.5 million commitment from the NFL Foundation.
"This partnership continues to positively impact the health and wellness of youth nationwide by helping kids be physically active while also providing many of them with their first experience playing football," said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. "We are excited to offer more kids the opportunity to get involved in the sport and play 60 each day."
While research shows active children do better both physically and academically, National Association for Sport and Physical Education research shows two out of three children aren't moving enough.
In 2014, the NFL and GENYOUth developed a turnkey approach to the physical inactivity crisis by supporting America's physical education teachers with resources to help students build a foundation for healthy, lifelong physical activity through football.
NFL FLAG Essentials kits, which include footballs, flag belts, posters and a physical education curriculum designed by the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) America, allow elementary and middle school students to get active and learn the basics of football in a fun environment.
"The flag program has been successful in part because it's dynamic, strategic, challenging, safe and fun, and it teaches kids of all different abilities teamwork, resiliency and respect," said Alexis Glick, chief executive officer of GENYOUth.
The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends activity time for children and adolescents include moderate-to-vigorous aerobic activity, muscle strengthening and bone-stretching exercises, and that kids should be encouraged to participate in age-appropriate, enjoyable and diverse activities.
NFL FLAG Essentials kits help achieve that goal, enabling kids to learn new skills and get active through football.
In addition to supplying NFL FLAG Essentials kits, the partners will provide in-person NFL FLAG trainings, using a curriculum designed to add flag football to physical education classes this fall.
The trainings will be offered in 18 NFL club markets, including: Baltimore, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, Green Bay, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Nashville, New Orleans, New York, Oakland, Philadelphia, San Diego, Tampa Bay and Washington, D.C. More than 1,500 physical education teachers have already received in-person NFL FLAG trainings.
Kits will be provided at the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year while supplies last. Schools can apply for the NFL FLAG Essentials kits, via the Fuel Up to Play 60 website. To learn more, visit the NFL's FLAG website. PD
PHOTO: Designed to increase physical activity among youth, the NFL FLAG Essentials program will distribute footballs, flag belts, posters and a physical education curriculum to 4,000 schools, allowing elementary and middle school students to get active and learn the basics of football in a fun environment. Photo provided by Fuel Up to Play 60.
—Excerpts from GENYOUth press release