Sports & Health
Twelve youth gathered at the Salt River High School gymnasium on Wednesday, January 20 for the Phoenix Suns FIT clinic with Phoenix Suns forward Sonny Weems (far top right) and other Phoenix Suns representatives.
The Phoenix Suns Encourage Community Youth to Be Active, Eat Healthy and Play Together!
By Sheila Begay
Au-Authm Action News

On Wednesday, January 20, Phoenix Suns shooting guard and small forward Sonny Weems visited with approximately 12 youth at the Salt River High School gymnasium during the Phoenix Suns Basketball FIT Clinic. This clinic is part of the NBA/WNBA FIT program, which encourages youth to be active, eat healthy and play together.

Also in attendance were Phoenix Suns Community Ambassador Steven Hunter, Facility Services Manager Hector Dorame, broadcaster Tim Leander, the Solar Squad, and the Gorilla.

The NBA/WNBA FIT community outreach program aims to get youth to pledge to becoming healthier individuals overall. They were encouraged to swap out snacks or junk food for healthier alternatives, to drink more water, to incorporate physical activity into their daily lives and to cut down on video-game time.

During the clinic, Leander asked Weems what he did in his hometown of West Memphis, Arkansas, to stay active. Weems responded with, I played a lot of sports. I played baseball (he was a pitcher), basketball and football. When youre a kid, you have all the energy in the world.

After a Q&A session with Weems and Hunter, the youth were divided into two age groups for a one-on-one basketball clinic with a Suns representative. The youth practiced proper stance, correct footing, how to dribble and how to execute a correct lay-up. They enjoyed nearly two hours of working out like the pros.

I was looking forward to playing basketball and having fun because I have an interest in it. What Im going to take away from this is the skills they taught me. It was incredible, said participant Alyssa Enos, 12.

I learned tricks and how I can eat healthier. Sometimes we dont have time to get [healthier] food because [my mom] works at Talking Stick and [were always on the go]. We usually grab something, but we need to work on getting healthier food and not just fast food, said participant Cecilia Burke, 9.

It was great. The number-one thing were teaching the kids is staying fit, said Weems about the FIT clinic. The only thing is we wish we had more kids out here so we could get the message of staying fit, always eating healthy and wanting to live healthy [out there]. It was a great turnout today; I was really happy to be here.

Hunter added, It was great. We love coming out here and putting on an exposition and helping the kids out. This Community has been so supportive to the Suns, and we really appreciate you guys and we want to come out here and give back as much as we can.

For more information about the FIT program, visit http://fit.nba.com/play-together.

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