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DE Ball Visits John F. Kennedy Middle School

Posted Oct 15, 2009

 
The students of John F. Kennedy Middle School had no idea what was in store for them when they gathered in the school gym on what was supposed to have been a typical Tuesday morning. Their surprise was obvious as Titans defensive end David Ball walked through the gym and gave high fives to excited students on October 13th.

This school visit was part of the NFL’s Play 60 campaign which encourages elementary and middle school aged children to get 60 minutes of exercise in each day. Kennedy Middle School is one of the Play 60 Challenge schools and will participate until the end of the semester when the winners of the challenge will receive prizes.

A multi-sport athlete growing up, Ball also encouraged the students to be physically active as part of the Titans WHAT MOVES U/Play 60 initiatives in conjunction with the American Heart Association. The program encourages youth to get an hour of physical activity each day in effort to fight childhood obesity. This season, as a part of the Titans What Moves U program, there will be six-week challenge at the schools the Titans visit for students to become more physically active. One dedicated student from each participating school will be chosen to attend a meeting with Coach Jeff Fisher and tour the Titans facility at the end of the season.

Ball spoke about the importance of being active each day, studying, and making good choices. He said he would not be where he is today if he didn’t work hard and study his opponents, which helps him be a better player. Ball addressed approximately 900 students before presenting the principal, Sam Braden III, with a Titans football autographed by Ball. Each student at Kennedy will receive a Play 60 team poster.

 
After the assembly, Ball met with 25 Kennedy students who were part of the student council or had been presented with a student of the week award during the school year. These students were also given a poster signed by Ball and a Titans folder. Students were encouraged to ask Ball questions about his career and how he prepares to play each Sunday.

When asked how he handles disappointment, Ball said, “I just figure out what I did wrong, work on how to fix it and then I just move on. You can’t dwell on disappointment because it won’t help you get better. You have to be positive, move on and try to be better.”

Ball was just one of many Titans who were out and about in the community on October 13th, also known as Titans Tuesday. Titans players have a steadfast commitment to the community and graciously spend their lone day off in and around Nashville.

Jared Cook, Alge Crumpler, Dominique Edison, LaVelle Hawkins and Bo Scaife visited patients at Saint Thomas Hospital. Each week, players visit patients at either Baptist or Saint Thomas Hospital.

Defensive tackle Jovan Haye was on hand at Benton Hall Academy to visit with 100 students, all of whom have learning disabilities. The visit was taped by Titans All Access for an upcoming feature on the first-year Titan who struggled with dyslexia as a youth before graduating from Vanderbilt University. Haye had previously visited Currey Ingram Academy, a school that also focuses on students with learning disabilities.

In addition to the Titans’ commitment to promoting fitness, nutrition, and physical activity of kids through the What Moves U program, the team is also working with The National Dairy Council (NDC) to promote healthy lifestyles. As part of a five-year program and $250 million commitment, the NDC and NFL will encourage students to adopt healthy behaviors, make nutritious food choices, and actively inspire positive change among their peers.

For more information on the WHAT MOVES U / Play 60 programs and The National Dairy Council program, log on to www.whatmovesu.com or www.schoolwellnesskit.org.

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