BRENTWOOD, Tenn. — Titans players and cheerleaders hopped off the NFL Play 60 Bus Tuesday for a special visit to Lipscomb Elementary, which was selected by the league as this market’s 2013 NFL Play 60 Super School.
Students in Titans jerseys and T-shirts formed a long tunnel that stretched from the school’s entrance through its halls. They held handmade signs and chanted and cheered.
“It felt like LP Field out here,”
The school submitted a proposal this fall that was chosen for a $10,000 grant from the NFL, Titans and Comcast to provide sports and fitness equipment. The grant was written by P.E. teacher Brenda Vroon.
The visit included presentation of an oversized check and autographed game ball, as well as an educational program with Titans mascot T-Rac and a bald eagle from Tennessee State Parks.
After the program, McCourty,
The cheerleaders taught dance moves, and players led students through a series of fitness stations and football related drills that included running, throwing footballs, lifting weights and jumping rope, where Washington worked up a sweat that seeped through his Tiffin University T-shirt to his jersey.
“Definitely bit off more than I could chew, but it was exciting,” Washington said. “You come into these situations to reach out to the kids and make sure they understand the things we do and preparations we go through every day is something they can do also. Coming in and showing these kids they can work out and stay active and continue to be healthy is important for us.”
Washington joked about getting an off day to rest from the amount of activity but said he had a blast.
“I kept wanting to tell myself to stop, but seeing them work and have such a good time and enjoying themselves made me want to work with them so I was happy to be here,” Washington said.
|Ryan Fitzpatrick rushes a passer in a football drill during the Titans' visit to NFL Play 60 Super School Lipscomb Elementary. Slideshow.|
Fitzpatrick is accustomed to eluding pass rushers, but he turned the tables Tuesday by coming toward the children and roaring to cause them to scramble before throwing a pass at a target.
McCourty and other players told students it was important for them to live healthfully so they can best apply themselves toward fitness, academic and personal goals.
“When you can (have healthy habits) early on, it makes it easier when you get up there in age and it’s very important to take care of your health,” McCourty said. “As professional athletes, we know what it takes to be able to perform at a high level, and for them, as kids, waking up every morning for the school bus and going through a long day, you need to eat right, make sure you get breakfast and eat the right foods during the day.”
About the NFL PLAY 60 Campaign: The NFL PLAY 60 program encourages youth to get at least 60 minutes of physical activity or play per day to fight childhood obesity. The Tennessee Titans bring PLAY 60 to thousands of kids each year, teaming up with the American Heart Association, the Southeast United Dairy Association and Tennessee State Parks. The NFL has committed more than $100 million to youth health and fitness through PLAY 60 programming, PSAs and grants from NFL team owners and players. For more, visit http://www.nflrush.com/health.
About the American Heart Association: The American Heart Association is a national non-profit organization focused on building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke, America’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers. The association partners with the NFL on the PLAY 60 Challenge to encourage 60 minutes of physical activity daily for children. For more on how to help kids live heart-healthy lives, visit www.heart.org/kids.
About the Southeast United Dairy Industry Association: On behalf of dairy farm families, the non-profit Southeast United Dairy Industry Association, Inc. (SUDIA) works with schools and health professionals to promote Fuel Up To PLAY 60 (FUTP60) in area schools. This program encourages students to “fuel up” with nutrient-rich foods often missing from their diets. Learn more at www.FuelUpToPlay60.com.
About Tennessee State Parks: Tennessee State Parks offer a variety of recreational opportunities across the state, as well as programs on everything from history to the natural world. Tennessee’s award-winning state parks are where Tennessee’s nature and history are beautifully preserved. For more: http://tnstateparks.com.