One important goal for healthy communities is to make sure that children get 60 minutes of physical activity a day. To reach that goal, Lancaster General Health works together with local schools to incorporate physical activity before, during and after the school day. This month, LG Health is sponsoring BootCamp900 at Burrowes Elementary School, which has gotten kids and parents moving in a family-friendly exercise class.

Each week in February during Burrowes’ after-school program, Luis Miranda of BootCamp900 is leading students and their parents through 60 minutes of exercises to strengthen their hearts, lungs and muscles. All of the exercises use body weight and no equipment so they can be done easily at home. In the first week of the program, the group did jumping jacks, sprints, push-ups and more. The exercises can be modified for all ability levels, but Luis encourages the students to stretch their limits and try a challenging exercise before they choose an easier version. Each student learns how to use proper form and complete the exercises safely. As Luis reminded the students at the end of class, “Your muscles have memory. If you learn how to do these exercises now, you will be able to do them properly all your life.”

Even after the four-week program at Burrowes ends, however, the physical activity will continue. Brenda Buescher, Health Promotion Specialist and leader of the Lighten Up Lancaster County Coalition, was excited about the partnership with BootCamp900 and the opportunity to help build capacity for physical activity in the School District of Lancaster.

“The Burrowes parents and students are excited to continue using the exercises they are learning in BootCamp900,” Buescher said, adding that teachers will be able to use some of the exercises during “brain breaks” in the classroom – quick bursts of activity that promote health and also improve attention and concentration for learning.

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