On Thursday, September 26th, the MLSE Shape Up program launched its fourth season to a school-wide assembly at St. Leo Catholic School in Etobicoke. The MLSE Shape Up program is a FREE, online DPA (Daily Physical Activity) and H&PE (Health & Physical Activity) resource for teachers – providing tools they need to get their students active.
As a part of the program, Shape Up visits various schools in Ontario throughout the year, bringing the excitement and spirit of the Toronto FC, Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Raptors, and Toronto Marlies to the classroom in hopes of building interest in physical activity. For Shape Up’s fourth season, the program launched at St. Leo’s with some very special guests from all four teams.
Students at St. Leo’s also had the opportunity to hear insight from the experts, including Toronto FC Defenseman Ryan Richter and Assistant Athletic Therapist Shawn Jeffers, Toronto Maple Leafs Forward Dave Bolland and Trainer Anthony Belza, Toronto Raptors Alumni Jamaal Magloire and Trainer Jon Lee, and Toronto Marlies Forward Greg McKegg and Strength Coach Mark Fitzgerald,
Toronto FC Defenseman Ryan Richter and Assistant Athletic Therapist Shawn Jeffers took the students through various exercises at the event that can easily be done in the classroom.
“My biggest piece of advice is to enjoy the activity you’re doing, no matter it is, find that passion and always enjoy it. Because once you stop having fun and once you stop enjoying what you’re doing, that’s when you lose that passion,” says Richter, “I’m sure for all the athletes here, to achieve these goals, we love what we do every day and we still have fun everyday even though we’re older.”
The purpose of the school visit program is to teach students the importance of participating in physical activity and healthy living. The school-wide assembly at St. Leo’s engaged students with exciting demonstrations, exercises and tips to help teachers and their students maintain a healthy, active lifestyle.
“Of course there is play but not as much as there could be or should be,” said St. Leo’s principal Lillian Ugrin. “A healthy lifestyle includes being physically active and that’s important because that in turn leads to longevity and a feeling of well-being. Don’t forget the social component: the friendships you develop on the court can last a lifetime.”
For more information or to register as a teacher for the MLSE Shape Up Program visit www.mlseshapeup.com.