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Success Stories: Huntington YMCA

When your town has one of the highest childhood obesity ratings in the country, what do you do?  You get moving…and so do those kids!  This is a story of a small town, and two hospital’s and a YMCA all on the same mission.

Success Stories:  Huntington YMCA, Huntington West Virginia

In August of 2008, the CDC released a report that classifiedHuntington, West Virginia as the unhealthiest city in the United States.  That spawned the birth of the very popularand even controversial television show: Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.  In 2009, Jamie visited Huntington and thusbegan the transformation process of this small town.

Several years have passed since then, and the community isstill making strides in the fight against obesity, with a main focal pointbeing their future community leaders. Yes, childhood obesity-as in many places-is literally a growing concern,but this town is on a mission.  A missionthey refuse to lose.

After assembling a “strike force” of talent and combiningresources, the Huntington YMCA, St. Mary’s Medical Center, Cabell HuntingtonHospital and the local Board of Education committed themselves to providing aplace for young ones to get physically fit while having fun and learning how tomaintain a healthy lifestyle all at the same time.  The stars were aligning for them.  They had the financial resources provided bya generous donation from the hospitals. They had the space as provided by the YMCA, and they had the buy in andsupport of the Board of Education to continue the momentum Jamie Oliver startedduring his time there.  But they neededhelp.  They needed to create anenvironment that would motivate, stimulate and activate kids in their communityfor years to come.  A place where theycould have fun and be themselves without feeling out of place or where theathletic kids and the artsy kids could interact on the same level and enjoysocial compatibility and equality.  EnterExergame Fitness.

A simple web request led them to find a turn key,interactive fitness room designed just for kids.  A place where the world of technology flowsabundantly and intersects with proven fitness concepts (Fitness 2.0)  And better yet?  It’s gamified, trackable and rewardable!

After several discussions with the heroes in Huntington, thedecision was made to install and implement the YOUTH X Platinum room with a few“power-ups” as Exergame calls them.  Theresults were astounding!  Take a look.

The team at St. Mary’s, Cabell  and at the Huntington YMCA deserve a ton ofcredit for their hard work and diligence in turning this once vacated spaceinto the amazing Kids in Motion room at the Y. Now, young ones throughout the surrounding communities are able tobenefit not only from the interactive fitness component, but also from thesupport and education of a pediatric dietitian as provided by St. Marys MedicalCenter and the influence of the local Board of Education who encourage parentsand students alike to actively participate in the after school fitness programsnow being offered at the YMCA.

What’s been the response thus far?  See for yourself:

Interview with John Rogers quote: “The room is exactly whata kid would want…they’re just having fun. Exergame is the best thing I’ve seenin all of the research we’ve done”

The Kids Speak for themselves

We here at Exergame Fitness are proud to have partners suchas this, and we hope that you and your organization will join us all in thefight of fixing fitness for generations to come!

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Exergame Fitness is leading a new movement incorporating technology into fitness. We provide a new way to engage people in fitness, through gamification and technology. By doing this, we create socially engaging, supportive, and inviting fitness communities worldwide

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