Monday May 13, 2013
NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell has joined some of the State’s sporting elite to kick off the 2013 Premier’s Sporting Challenge – with a record number of students set to take part.
More than 245,000 students in 1,100 public schools will get active over the winter months, putting into practice the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.
“Having an active, healthy lifestyle is important whether you are 7 or 70 years old,” Mr O’Farrell said at the launch at Bennett Road Public School in Colyton, where he was joined by local MP Tanya Davies.
“The Premier’s Sporting Challenge is all about encouraging young people to get more active, more often and having a healthy diet.
“Regular physical activity is not only important for our young people’s health, but it helps their minds in the classroom.
“We face a huge challenge to bring down rates of obesity in our society - there is no better place to start those good habits than in our schools so they carry through a healthy lifestyle to adulthood.
“This year’s ambassadors - including Olympic silver medallist Jessica Fox and league legend Nathan Hindmarsh - will visit NSW schools to share their stories and inspire students to follow their example of healthy living.”
Mulgoa MP Tanya Davies said Bennett Road Public School had participated in every year of the Challenge since it commenced in 2008.
“Physical activity can be great fun whether it’s playing team sports like soccer or netball or bike riding and walking with friends – I am sure we’ll see great competition between friends and between local schools in this year’s Challenge,” Ms Davies said.
The NSW Premier’s Sporting Challenge encourages NSW public schools, students, their parents and communities to focus on the importance of daily physical activity.
Over the two middle terms of the school year they are encouraged to find at least 30 minutes to be physically active, every day, for 10 weeks.
The Challenge is supported by an elite group of NSW athletes including Olympic and Paralympic representatives Jessica Fox, Jayme Richardson, Erik Horrie, Dani Samuels and Australian team representatives such as Susan Pratley, Sarah Coyte, Craig Stevens and more, many of whom were present for the launch.
A big hit on the day was the attendance of Rugby League great Nathan Hindmarsh, in his new role as Ambassador for NRL’s One Community.
Corporate partners for this program include Principal Sponsor National Rugby League’s One Community, Major Sponsors Sydney Markets’ Fresh for Kids program, and Australian Power and Gas, as well as Supporting Sponsor Fitness First.
On completion of the Challenge, students receive a certificate based on the level of daily physical activity they have sustained over 10 weeks:
Any moderate to vigorous activity can form part of a student’s log.
Participation has grown significantly from the program’s introduction in 2008. That year, 74,000 students from 404 schools took part. In 2011, those figures rose to 191,000 students from over 1,000 schools; and last year over 220,000 students completed the Challenge.