The well known phrase "your mission, should you choose to accept it..." is a signature of the popular television show and movie franchise Mission Impossible. The things they were tasked with accomplishing were truly daunting. While the mission of JumpBunch does not place our coaches in life and death situations by comparison, we believe that what we hope to accomplish truly matters in a way that can influence the lives of children forever.
The poster that JumpBunch franchisees place on the walls in schools hosting our classes has the following two words standing out...ACTIVE AND HAPPY! Of course, we all want nothing more than for kids to be happy and healthy! Our mission, and the role we play in helping make that happen, is to get kids moving more, introduce them to many fun sports/activities, and teach that being active is a choice that makes your life better. We like to say "building healthy habits early"!
If you've ever had fun in a class of any kind, I will guarantee you that much of that was because of the leader, teacher, coach, or whatever their title was on that day. It's absolutely true that the fun starts here.
A message we try to send in every JumpBunch class is that instead of saying "I give up" we should say "I'll try again." To learn anything, we must experience failure. In fact, to get really good at something we must fail a lot! Think about the fact that the greatest hitter in baseball history still made an out 60% of the time. Michael Jordan, likely the greatest basketball player of all time, was cut from his team long before he went on to star for the University of North Carolina and Chicago Bulls. Many consider Peyton Manning as one of the best quarterbacks of all time, and he holds the NFL record for most career touchdown passes with 539. However, over the course of that career, he also threw 251 interceptions. His accomplishments, and all athletes who achieve great things, would never be possible if the reaction to failure was anything other than trying again...and again...and again.
Recently we had a call with a group from China that were interested in possibly bringing JumpBunch to their country. During the call they asked a question about how cultural differences might need to be considered when evaluating how the program might work there or in other countries. Our CEO, Tom Bunchman, began his reply by pointing out something that is so simple yet so powerful. Kids are kids. At the core of it all, if we let them, kids all have the same basic needs and desires wherever they may be.
There's a lot going in February. Rumor is that there is a pretty big football game (you might even call it Super) to kick things off. There is also an important and fun holiday full of candy, flowers, and gifts from the heart. Speaking of hearts, February is also the month that we are encouraged to consider how well we are taking care of that most important organ in our bodies.
Some things simply can't wait for resolutions. To clarify, we are talking about New Year's resolutions. That mythical "starting line" that occurs on January 1 each year can be recreated in any month on any day that you choose. As parents, we all want our kids to be happy and healthy so we try to put them in position to be active through a variety of programs. However, sometimes we fail to realize that while that is good, the best way to motivate our kids to be active is to give them a good example to follow.
Earlier this year one of our posts discussed the fact that healthy habits start at home. A habit is basically an action repeated often enough to become a routine that occurs without any thought. Unfortunately a habit can also be characterized by inaction though. When you choose not to engage with your kids at home in a way that promotes an active and healthy lifestyle, that lack of activity is as much a bad a habit as doing so is a good one.
A study by the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that American kids lag in worldwide fitness tests. More specifically, when compared to the fitness levels of kids in other countries, U.S. kids ranked 47 out of 50 participating countries. The study measured aerobic fitness levels using what is referred to as a "beep" test. Kids ran back and forth between two points until a beep occurs.