To help reverse the growing epidemic of childhood obesity, the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation and United Way of America opened the Redskins Youth Fitness Zone at the YMCA Alexandria on Tuesday.
The Charitable Foundation and United Way of America helped create an interactive gym for kids who participate in the Alexandria YMCA's after-school and PHD (Physical, Healthy, Driven) programs.
The gym, for ages 6-14, features age and interest-appropriate workout equipment designed to make exercising feel like playtime with the use of video games.
Redskins players, including defensive end Chris Wilson, cornerback Leigh Torrence and linebacker Matt Sinclair, were on hand to lead approximately 100 kids from area after-school programs in a fitness fair.
The children had a chance to experience the new equipment, including dance pads, virtual biking and surfboard simulators, and learn more about the benefits of good nutrition and health at a young age.
The event is part of the ninth annual NFL/United Way Hometown Huddle, a series of volunteer projects implemented on the same day by NFL players and United Ways in different NFL cities nationwide.
The Redskins Youth Fitness Zone is part of the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation's Redskins All Stars community service program.
The Redskins All Stars program, sponsored by the Freddie Mac Foundation, is a volunteer competition designed to provide a way for area youth to make a difference in their community. The program encourages Virginia, Maryland, and District of Columbia youth to make a difference in their community by organizing and completing a service project.
After the project is completed and all paperwork is submitted, Washington, DC area community leaders judge the projects and select those that will receive one of over 30 Redskins All Stars grants ranging from $1,000 to $15,000.