Family to educate about fitness on 50-week, around-the-world trip
Wed, August 27, 2014 at 14:45
Brad Spiegel in 50 Sports in 50 Weeks, Childhood Obesity, Face2Face, Jacqui Brown, News, PPaul Brown, Type 2 diabetes, health promotion, sedentary

Paul Brown knows how to get a point across. After all, he was named the 2014 Presenter of the Year by the Australian Fitness Network.

It is safe to say that his latest endeavor will be heard by many, and most likely taken to heart by the majority. We’re talking possibly tens of millions of people. That is his hope anyway.

Paul and his wife, Jacqui, are huge promoters of fighting the battle against childhood obesity, sedentary behavior and type 2 diabetes, especially among youth.

So the two fitness industry veterans, along with their 9-year-old son, Ben, are hitting the road for almost a year to promote sports and healthy lifestyles to children and families alike.

But this isn’t a venture that will see them on a stage, with a PowerPoint presentation on a giant screen behind them, with a couple hundred people with laptops and notebooks jotting down key points. 

The Browns are putting on 50 Sports in 50 Weeks, a globe-trotting adventure that will take them from their home in Australia to Siberia, the United States, Europe, back to Australia, and many, many destinations in between. At each spot they will learn the intricacies and fundamentals from a well-known athlete in the sport, often in an iconic spot or stadium. In some cases they will watch a championship event, taking in the sport as a spectator.

But that is far from the end of their week. Before and after each sport of the week the Browns will host Get It Right seminars, events at health clubs, community centers and schools that will educate on health and fitness, and Family Fit Events, a chance for local families to play the sport with the Browns and the mentor.

GET IT RIGHT

Paul Brown is still looking for clubs to host a Get it Right seminar. Check out the press kit by clicking on the logo below.

“My mission in life is to spread the word about why we should keep in shape,” said Paul. “If we can change the behavior of grown-ups and get kids before they are adults with bad habits … we can stop it before it becomes a problem.

“Sports is something everyone has in common – whether you play or watch. I hope I can galvanize people through sports, get their attention and get the message out.”

This is not going to be backyard softball or Frisbee. Many of the sports already lined up are grueling, rare and difficult to learn. Among them will be cross-country skiing in Finland, hurling in Scotland, rugby and scuba diving in Australia, squash in Guatemala, trout fishing on Chilean ice fields, and weightlifting in Kazakhstan, to name a few.

Brown hopes the enormity of it all will pique people’s interest, which in turn should get them off the couch, out from behind the computer or away from playing video games.

“We all have one body and we got to get it right,” Brown explained. “If we can do 50 sports in 50 weeks, that is something people will want to talk about. Thirty-five countries and the best champions of every sport, that is pretty cool. People will be asking ‘Why are they doing that?’ Our message is simple – to not exercise is not an option.”

Some of the sports and locations the Browns are most looking forward to include snow skiing indoors in Dubai; dog sledding in either Alaska or Siberia; trapeze in Las Vegas, with a Cirque du Soleil performer; golf at St. Andrews (where it was invented); and bungee jumping in New Zealand, at the site of the first jump. 

Household names signed on as mentors include Natalie Cook, beach volleyball gold medalist (the opening week of Oct. 13-19); Karrie Webb, Hall of Fame golfer; Simon Leitch, Australian fencing national champion; and Edgars Bertuks, Latvian orienteering champion.

Sure does sound like a bucket list of items for a retired mutli-millionaire. But they are not hoping to show off their passports after 50 weeks. Their goals include:

Youth is a recurring theme for 50 Sports in 50 Weeks, and that is the reason why they are bringing their 9-year-old along. Ben will be an example that local families, and those all around the world, can use to get their children, family members and neighbors active and healthy.

“My son is the representation of every family out there to not grow up in front of the TV or a computer screen,” said Brown, founder and creator of Face2Face Retention Program. “All parents fear their children growing up with diabetes and being obese. Being in this industry we know how important healthy kids is. Obesity and type 2 diabetes are running rampant. Someone has got to say this has to stop.”

Ben will get plenty out of it, too.

“At 9 years old, I don’t think the gravity of it all has sunk in yet,” Brown said, “At end of this, he will be different boy. I think he will have the power to be confident and believe that anything is possible.”

Be sure to check back at IHRSA's blog - ihrsa.org/blog - as we will chronicle the 50 Sports in 50 Weeks trip with a running weekly journal with photos and a recap of each week.

For more information on 50 Sports in 50 Weeks, visit www.50sports.org or e-mail info@50sports.org. You can also follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

 

Article originally appeared on IHRSA (http://www.ihrsa.org/).
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