If we want our kids to grow into healthy adults, it’s a good idea to start helping them form healthy habits when they’re young.
In fact, studies show that seventh grade is a key time in children’s development when they start to begin making decisions about their fitness and nutrition routines that often last well into adulthood.
That’s why the Westfield YMCA began its 7th Grade Initiative. The program aims to help adolescents develop positive attitudes and behaviors about nutrition, exercise, body image and self esteem. In 2009, UnitedHealthcare partnered with the YMCA to support the 7th Grade Initiative by introducing the UnitedHealthcare Health Bee. The UnitedHealthcare Health Bee is a fun, Jeopardy-style competition that tests students on what they’ve learned about physical fitness, nutrition, science and health throughout the year.
On Wednesday, October 27 the Westfield YMCA and UnitedHealthcare kicked off the 7th Grade Initiative with a healthy celebration. Students enjoyed a fun evening of fitness activities and games, a climbing wall, advice from health experts and healthy snacks.
|The YMCA's 7th Grade Initiative will teach kids about getting good nutrition, including helping them understand how much sugar is in many everyday foods and beverages|
|Kids had the chance to test their strength and climbing skill's on the Westfield YMCA's rock climbing wall|
|John Verga, vice president, UnitedHealthcare of New Jersey, joined in the fun fitness activities at the Westfield YMCA’s 7th Grade Initiative Kickoff.|
In spring 2016, UnitedHealthcare will host Health Bees not only at the Westfield YMCA, but at several YMCAs throughout New Jersey. For information on last year’s UnitedHealthcare Health Bee competitions, check out my blog post from earlier this year.