UT Elementary Jumps Rope for Heart
by Dorothy Garretson
Matt Nader encourages the Lil’ Longhorns to live healthy lifestyles.
For the first time UT Elementary School students joined thousands of other students across the country in Jump Rope for Heart this February. As Heart Heroes, the Lil’ Longhorns raised $610 for the American Heart Association.
Coach Bob Knipe centered UT Elementary’s Jump Rope for Heart campaign on living a healthy lifestyle in community. The Lil’ Longhorns learned different jump rope tricks, and the school kept a jump rope moving all day February 13.
For further inspiration, Matt Nader spoke at a morning assembly to tell his story about why heart health is important. At seventeen, Nader survived a sudden cardiac arrest during a high school football game. He admitted to the students that he did not make healthy food choices as a high school athlete, “I had poor habits: I did not live a healthy lifestyle.” Since this experience, he has been a heart health advocate. He encouraged every student to start healthy eating and exercising habits now, so that they can keep them for the rest of their lives.
Coach Knipe and UT Elementary will continue to participate in Jump Rope for Heart for years to come because “it’s about the philosophy of the program: it’s about the kids setting their individual goals and achieving them, not about comparing yourself to the rest of the group.”
Click here to see the photos from the Jump Rope for Heart morning assembly.