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Students Focus on Fitness a Minute at a Time

From guest blogger Kimberly Shannon

It could just take a minute to get students thinking about fitness. That's the idea behind the JAMmin' Minute, an initiative that encourages schools around the country to participate in short, in-class exercises to promote healthy habits and raise awareness about the importance of daily physical activity.

Last week the Let's Move in School program, an initiative of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, joined in to promote the so-called JAMmin' World Record event. Though there was no official 'world record,' some 1.3 million students and adults signed up to participate in the collective activity.

In a contest to see which state could gain the greatest participation levels, West Virginia won with 124,202 registered participants. The JAM School Program, which organized the event, may attempt to set an official Guinness world record next year, according to the Paragould Daily Press.

The JAM School Program was founded five years ago by the company Health E-Tips. The program serves over 9 million students in about 20,000 schools nationwide, according to Founder and CEO Patti Howell.

The company has two free products: the JAMmin' Minute, which provides a weekly email to schools with a list of five simple exercise routines and a health tip, and the JAM Blast, which provides a 3- to 5-minute exercise routine delivered by an athlete, along with messages about health and fun facts about that athlete. The program also produces a monthly newsletter that includes health tips for students, their parents, and school personnel.

The JAM email provides a link to a library of routines, which includes some authored by students themselves. The program encourages having students leader the exercises.

Schools that regularly participate in the program are encouraged to do the JAMmin' Minute at least five times a day, according to a story by Education World. The mission of the JAM School Program is to teach students healthier lifestyle habits.

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