Combatting physical inactivity & obesity begins in preschool

    - Young children across Ontario JiggaJump their way to being active -

    TORONTO, May 7 /CNW/ - Young children across Ontario are getting active
at the JiggaJump Alive! concerts, featuring Juno Award-winning children's
entertainers, Judy&David. This exciting and interactive concert series begins
today in Guelph and will visit cities across the province throughout May.
    JiggaJump uses music to engage young children in fun, physical activities
to help plant the seeds for a lifetime of active, healthy living. These high
energy events will provide an opportunity for children, parents, caregivers,
schools and community leaders to be physically active together, while
reinforcing the importance of physical activity with children - and families -
in educational, community and home settings.
    "Through policy directives such as Daily Physical Activity in elementary
schools, we are seeing an increased commitment toward physical activity
promotion for children in Ontario," said Elio Antunes, Executive Director,
Ophea. "The JiggaJump Alive! concert tour provides a unique and innovative
opportunity to build upon this momentum for our youngest children and enrich
their bodies and minds during their earliest stages of development."
    JiggaJumpAlive! will get 3-9 year old children up and moving in the
following cities: Guelph, Cobourg, Brampton, Orillia, Hamilton, Toronto,
Lindsay and North Bay. The concert tour is based on the brand new JiggaJump CD
and Leader's Guide, now being used in thousands of Ontario schools and Early
Years Centres.
    JiggaJump is the creative product of All Together Now Entertainment Inc.
(Judy & David), developed and delivered in partnership with Ophea. Funding for
JiggaJump was provided by the Ministry of Health Promotion through the
Communities in Action Fund.

    About Judy&David
    Judy&David are the Juno-award-winning stars of Treehouse TV's hit series
"Judy & David's Boom Box" and are now among the top-grossing children's
entertainers in North America. They launched in February 1993 with the vision
of providing hip, fun-filled children's music that could engage a young
audience's active involvement at every turn. Judy & David are one of Canada's
most celebrated and sought-after live family concert acts. They have also
become one of the most prolific children's recording acts in North America,
with sixteen recordings and four video releases to their credit and over five
million recordings sold around the world. Visit For
online media photos visit:

    About Ophea
    Ophea (Ontario Physical and Health Education Association) is a
not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting Ontario school communities
through advocacy, quality programs and services, and partnership building.
Ophea is led by the vision that all kids will value, participate in, and make
a lifelong commitment to active, healthy living. Visit

    Facts on Physical Activity and Children
    -   91% of Canadian children and youth are not meeting the guidelines
        set forth by Canada's Physical Activity Guides for Children and
        Youth. (*)
    -   Less than one-third of parents are aware of the recommended guideline
        for daily physical activity outlined in Canada's Physical Activity
        Guides for Children and Youth(xx)
    -   Families play a major role in influencing children's physical
        activity levels; particularly when parents reinforce the behaviour by
        transporting their kids to physical activity venues, watching their
        child participate, and participating with the child.(xx)
    -   Participation in physical activity is an important contributor to
        promoting physical and mental health, increasing self-esteem and
        supporting academic performance in the early years.(xxx)
    -   Physical activity helps drive brain development in the
        early years.(xxx)
    -   Physical activity helps young children learn to get along with
    -   "Young children need to engage in enjoyable and stimulating learning
        activities that encourage exploration of their world, promote
        physical skills, enhance neural processing, and develop a general
        awareness of their bodies' needs, limitations, and

    (*)    Canadian Physical Activity Levels Among Youth (CAN PLAY) study by
           the Canadian Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institutes.

    (xx)   Canada's Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth -
           2006, Active Healthy Kids Canada

    (xxx)  Early Years Study, published in 1999 by Honorable Margaret McCain
           and Fraser Mustard

    (xxx)  The Ontario Ministry of Education (2006). The Kindergarten Program
           (Revised) pp. 53.

For further information:

For further information: Shannon Boyd, Ophea, (416) 426-7297,

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