Local News

Wake Schools Celebrate 'First In Fitness' Competition

Posted April 21, 2005 7:36 a.m. EDT

— In fighting an obesity epidemic and promoting exercise as a habit, Wake County schools is putting its best foot forward.

Wake County schools' annual "First in Fitness" competition is one of several fitness and healthy living initiatives.

"We want our youth to practice those healthy behaviors because it makes it more likely that they'll be healthy adults," said Ann Hulslander, director of the Wake County Schools' K-12 Health for Living program.

Jordyn Volkan's dedication even rubbed off on her father.

"Because of her, I started jogging myself every other day, so I wanted to get with her and get her involved, so I got myself involved too," said Murad Volkan, Jordyn's father.

Other programs target the needs of less active students -- to encourage better nutrition, more sleep and more exercise.

After a new state mandate, the school system is looking for ways to squeeze in a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise per school day. Over 23 years, the "First in Fitness" event has grown from just a handful of schools in Wake County to over 70 schools and thousands of competitors.