NFL Celebrates Youth Health and Fitness

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In an annual tradition, the NFL will encourage children and families to be active during special NFL PLAY 60 themed games throughout Thanksgiving weekend. PLAY 60 is a league wide effort to fight childhood obesity by getting kids active for at least 60 minutes a day. In recognition of NFL PLAY 60, The Oakland Raiders have teamed up with Playworks, a national nonprofit organization that partners with low-income elementary schools to provide a safe, healthy, and inclusive play and physical activities at recess and throughout the entire school day.  Students from Brookfield Elementary School will serve as the Oakland Raiders Play 60 ambassadors, and will participate in a pre-game field presentation before the Raiders take on the Miami Dolphins

"The Oakland Raiders are proud to recognize the young people who demonstrated a commitment to good health and we encourage all young people to Play 60 throughout the year," said Raiders Chief Executive Amy Trask.

"Playworks is proud to partner with the Oakland Raiders and the NFL for "Play 60," said Playworks East Bay Executive Director Alison Townley. "We commend them for recognizing the importance of play for kid's healthy development. We're pleased to bring our expertise playing with kids on school playgrounds to the Coliseum as part of the Raider experience this Thanksgiving."

Designed to tackle childhood obesity, NFL PLAY 60 brings together the NFL's long-standing commitment to health and fitness with partner organizations like Playworks.  Since the program was launched in 2007, the NFL has committed more than $200 million to youth health and fitness through programming, grants, and media time for PSAs. 

In support of NFL PLAY 60, all Thanksgiving weekend games will raise awareness of the childhood obesity epidemic and showcase the NFL and its clubs' commitment to help reverse this trend. Beginning on Thanksgiving Day and continuing in the coming weeks, teams will designate a home game as an 'NFL PLAY 60' game. On-field elements will include PLAY 60 field stencils, banners and goal post wraps.

Playworks will be sharing its expertise in play and physical activity in Raiderville's Play60 Zone on Sunday, November 28th, from 8:30 am – 12:30 pm.

Playworks will run fun games for children ages 4-12. Games played in the Play60 Zone will include classic and new games like "Four-Square", "Switch", and variations of tag. The games will be easy to teach, easy to learn and fun. The environment within the Play60 Zones will be high-energy, inclusive of everyone regardless of skill level, and accessible.

In addition, Playworks will receive a grant to improve the playground at a local public elementary school, used by more than 400 students daily.  The $35,000 Youth Fitness Zone Grant will also enable Playworks to organize and run two flag football leagues for students from 37 elementary schools throughout Oakland.

The Youth Fitness Zone Grant, awarded by The Oakland Raiders and NFL Charities, is part of the NFL's commitment to health and fitness.  Since its inception, NFL Charities has granted more than $200 million to youth health and fitness through the PLAY 60 program.

Playworks is a national nonprofit organization that supports learning by providing safe, healthy and inclusive play and physical activity to schools at recess and throughout the entire school day. Playworks is the only nonprofit organization in the country to send trained, full-time coaches to low-income, urban schools, where they transform recess and play into a positive experience that helps kids and teachers get the most out of every learning opportunity. Our coaches introduce classic games that are disappearing from schoolyards as well as new games designed to build leadership and foster teamwork. When Playworks partners with a school, kids are more physically active, and they return to class focused and ready learn.

A special NFL PLAY 60 public service announcement will debut during each of the three games played on Thanksgiving.  The 90-second PSA features team executives and players from around the league joining with local children to get healthy and active. Patriots Chairman and CEO  ROBERT KRAFTand WRDEION BRANCH; Bengals Executive Vice President KATIE BLACKBURNand LB DHANI JONES; Rams LB JAMES LAURINAITIS;*Bears DE ISRAEL IDONIJE; and Chargers DE LUIS CASTILLO *are among those featured in the PSA, alongside children who take part in PLAY 60 activities in their communities. The PSA also will air during the Sunday and Monday Night Football games on Thanksgiving weekend and continue airing in a shorter format throughout the rest of the season. In addition, the Thanksgiving games will include the debut of a United Way PLAY 60 PSA, featuring Bears players, including the team's rookie class. * *

NFL PLAY 60 is also implemented locally, as part of the NFL's in-school, after-school and team-based programs.  Teams have constructed 100 NFL PLAY 60 youth fitness zones since 2007 with grants from NFL Charities and more than 300,000 children participated in team PLAY 60 activities this year alone.

"Thanksgiving is a perfect time to encourage families to get active," said Commissioner ROGER GOODELL. "Our NFL PLAY 60 campaign continues to impact more children with each passing year, and we're proud of our teams for all that they do to keep kids healthy."

Children and families can join the PLAY 60 movement by pledging to be active every day. Those children who submit their PLAY 60 story have the chance to be named an NFL PLAY 60 Super Kid, with one child and family receiving the opportunity to represent NFL PLAY 60 on-field at this year's Super Bowl to help kick off the game.  Fans can visit www.NFLRUSH.com/Play60 to learn more. 

In addition, beginning Thanksgiving weekend and continuing through January, NFL PLAY 60 and USA Football, the NFL's official youth football development partner, will work with Sports Authority on the Pass the Good campaign, which collects and redistributes used sports equipment to help underprivileged children and youth football players across the country get active and healthy.  Football cleats, gloves and NFL merchandise will be collected at Sports Authority stores nationwide; all individuals who donate one of these items receives a $10 cash card to thank them for their commitment to NFL PLAY 60 and youth health.

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