Avondale Community members trying to curb childhood obesity
Friday morning, dozens of students at the Avondale Center had a workout jam session.
Not only does physical activity help maintain weight, but it also reduces the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
More than 70 percent of students are not getting the recommended daily 60 minutes of physical fitness, according to the CDC.
The goal is to change each child's mentality to help them have a longer life.
Students at the Avondale Center had all the workout gear they needed to get moving: sneakers, workout clothes and an energetic personal trainer named Tobe Taylor.
And to make it a jam session, a DJ pumped up the crowd.
“Let's give a little rest on the electronics for a while, and let's get moving a little bit,” said Tobe Taylor. “Whether that's outside, or just taking the time to toss the ball around.”
Within a few minutes, sweat began to pour down, but that didn't stop them from having some fun.
Starting with some stretches, then getting into a cardio routine.
“Just to be very blunt, we are tired of people sitting around, especially the minority community,” said Ladarius Price.
These workout jam sessions started back in March, with Brainerd High being the first to experience the fun. The sessions are a program of Cempa Community Care in coordination with the City of Chattanooga.
Ladarius Price, an organizer from Cempa, says there's a need for more physical activity in his community.
So, his group organized free sessions at different locations for people to be active and healthy.
“People taking full ownership, and responsibility for their health,” said Ladarius Price. “It's just about feeling better about life. When you feel better, a lot of other things flow better in your life.”
Tennessee is among the top 20 in the nation leading childhood obesity, and the adult rate isn't too far behind, according to the state of obesity.
Price says for many getting a gym membership may not be in their budget, but you don't necessarily have to have one to get a good workout.
He explains all he had to do growing up was walk out his front door.
“As soon as school is over, and you finished your homework, you were outside until it was time for you to come in,” said Price. “So we want kids to get excited about being active.”
There will be another workout jam session Saturday, July 20 at Coolidge Park from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.