Kids take centerstage to help the First Lady kick off Let's Move! Active Schools
By Christina M. Tapper
With the help of some star athlete friends, First Lady Michelle Obama got more than 6,000 Chicago school children on their feet as she introduced her latest program, Let's Move! Active Schools last February. Tennis star Serena Williams, skateboarder Paul Rodriguez, world champion sprinter Allyson Felix, Olympic gold medal gymnast Gabrielle Douglas, and San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick — who also promotes kids' healthy eating and activity through the NFL's and National Dairy Council's program, Fuel Up to Play 60 — took the stage as the First Lady led the crowd in jumping jacks and dance moves at the kickoff event organized by Nike.
"It was so much fun to be with all of the kids," says Douglas. "I want them to know working out can be fun. For example, when you're playing a game like tag." Says Rodriguez, "I loved playing hide-and-seek with friends and handball when I was younger. Those games help you develop skills that can be useful later in life."
In addition to showing off her favorite dance move, the Dougie, Mrs. Obama delivered a powerful message that reminded students how to achieve excellence. Pointing to the star-studded lineup of athletes on the stage, she said, "They turned themselves into champions by doing the hard work, getting their education, exercising every day, eating healthy, practicing their skills over and over and over again. And we're all here today to tell you that you can do the same thing."
Check out SI Kids Kid Reporter Grace Ybarra's interview with First Lady Michelle Obama about the Let's Move! program!
Photo: Todd Rosenberg for Sports Illustrated