Las Vegas Raiders punter AJ Cole today led Special Olympics athletes from Nevada and Northern California in a fun and engaging virtual workout as part of the Healthy Athletes program. Cole shared his at-home workouts to stay in performance shape while unable to compete during these turbulent times and discussed the importance of staying active and healthy during the offseason.
The Healthy Athletes program provides health services and education for Special Olympics athletes to perform at their best, both on and off the playing field, and promote a healthy lifestyle which is critical to their success. The event also included a post-workout Q&A for Cole and the Special Olympics athletes to chat about their favorite quarantine activities, recipes, healthy foods, inspiring messages and what they look forward to the most when shelter-in-place is over.
The Raiders are proud supporters of Special Olympics Nevada and their mission to enhance the quality of life of athletes through health and wellness opportunities. During a Watch Party last season at Las Vegas Ballpark, the Raiders recognized Special Olympian Global Messenger Paul Brooks, surprising him with a customized Raiders jersey and the reveal that he was getting an all-expenses paid trip to Super Bowl LIV in Miami.
The Raiders also hosted their Huddle for 100 during the Watch Party, where fans volunteered to assemble health packets with hydration and nutrition items as well as notes of encouragement for Special Olympics Nevada athletes. The health packets were distributed to athletes throughout the state of Nevada to in support of their Health Fit-5 program. The Raiders also collaborated with Special Olympics Nevada to host a flag football tournament for their athletes. Raiders Alumni coached the teams and the Raiderettes taught a dance routine to an all-abilities cheer squad.
Last year, Raiders Alumni and Raiderettes were on hand when Special Olympics athletes and coaches descended on the Reno area to compete in the 2019 Special Olympics Nevada Summer Games. In addition, Nevada Law Enforcement and Special Olympics athletes made a pit stop at the future home of the Raiders, Allegiant Stadium, while participating in the Southern Nevada Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR). They were greeted by Raiders Alumni, Raiderettes and Raider Rusher during the fun-filled stop that featured interactive games and Raiders giveaways.