By Teresa Varley
Defensive end Brett Keisel continued his support of What Moves U, a program that the Steelers, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and American Heart Association have teamed up for.
Keisel took part in an assembly with seventh and eighth grade students at Grove City Middle School as a part of a program that combines healthy living with education.
An enthusiastic Keisel did jumping jacks, steps and marched in place along with the students, who then used their math skills to check their heart rate afterwards.
"It's important because in today's day and age we are in an obese nation where a lot of kids are overweight," said Keisel. "It's easy for me to come out and try to tell kids to eat healthy and get active and try to lead a healthier, happier life style.
"It's been very encouraging to watch how this has developed and I am excited about it."
What Moves U is a curriculum-based activity program designed to fight childhood obesity by motivating middle school students to get up and move. Teachers incorporate physical activity into their lesson plans to help children become more fit while they learn.
"I think it's very interesting how they tied it all in with education," said Keisel. "Not only can you work on staying active, it helps them use the academic side at school as well."
The NFL and American Heart Association introduced What Moves U and this year in Pennsylvania, the Steelers and Philadelphia Eagles have incorporated the departments of Health and Education into the program.
Keisel has been attending What Moves U assemblies all season and encourages the kids to stay active, especially this time of year when the tendency is to stay inside rather than be active outside.
"There are still things you can do," said Keisel about staying active during the winter. "Get outside as much as you can. Get your friends, go out and play games, play tag, play football or basketball. It will help."
He takes his own advice.
"I just got back from a mountain lion hunt where I was tracking mountain lions and that was a blast," said Keisel. "I walk my dogs every day. In order to be in this league you have to stay in shape all of the time. There basically is no offseason. We understand that and that's what I do.
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