One of them is the 2010 Little Rockers Kids Marathon to be held Saturday, March 6.
Little Rock Marathon organizers are looking for leaders for the Kids Marathon Training Program and have put a 2010 Leader Kit on their website. Click here to register online.
Since 2004, more than 13,800 children have logged over 361,500 miles in the Little Rockers Kids Marathon Training Program. Over 7,200 enthusiastic Little Rockers from 23 states have crossed the Little Rocker’s Kids Marathon finish line.
Not all children are alike, so not all Little Rocker programs are alike. The Little Rockers Kids Marathon Training Program is a leader in youth fitness and is designed to allow volunteer parents/educators to be as creative as your time, talent and budget will allow.
Setting up a Little Rockers Kids Marathon Training Program is easy:
1. You need a leader who is strongly committed to a healthy lifestyle and to helping children.
Perhaps you want to start a Little Rockers program and you've never participated in exercise, then start now and work your goals along with those of the children in your program. Children can be great motivators. Keep in mind that you don't have to be a competitive runner; however fitness should be a part of your lifestyle. Kids respond to sincerity. If you are truly dedicated to what you are teaching they will respond. You can't fool kids.
2. The support of the administration is a key component.
If you are hoping for a whole school program you will also need the support of the teachers. Talk to your school or organization leaders about offering a program. You'll need evidence of the looming health crisis due to obesity and sedentary lifestyles in children and a proposal to present to faculty members. Be prepared to be flexible and let others help you with the planning. If you are not the Physical Education Specialist, enlist their help in the planning. If you are designing a recess mileage program with volunteers, you'll want to make the recording of the mileage simple so as to not burden the teachers with extra work. The Little Rockers Kids Marathon has forms to help you keep track of things.
3. It helps to have volunteers, but it’s not necessary if your group is small. If you need help, ask the parents of the children involved or talk about it at your PTO or PTA meeting.
4. Start planning your program.
Decide if it will be a mileage program, where kids keep track of miles and work for personal or group goals. Choose your incentives for reaching certain milestones. Many schools give 'toe tokens' or other trinkets to kids to collect. Your program should be enjoyable with participation in the Final Mile Event next March being the goal. Remember you're not going to be acting as a coach to train kids for the Olympics in a recess or an after school program. It should be fun!
5. Find a route.
Find a suitable location or facility and time (either during school or after school to hold training). Use a track, field, gym, trail, or black top on the school grounds. Use cones to mark off certain distances: 1/4 miles, 1/2 miles, 100m, 200m, 400m etc. You can vary surfaces for fun. If your school doesn’t have an appropriate space contact your district Jr. High or High School or local Park and Recreation Department to find the nearest outdoor or indoor space. You might be able to engage in a wonderful new partnership.
6. Obtain some equipment/supplies.
Optional equipment includes: cones, stop watch, clip boards, batons, tokens, first aid kit, and running journals or logs. Training logs are available in the 2010 Leader Kit or create your own.
7. Tell the kids about Little Rockers.
Tell the children about the program during a break or special program if the school administration will allow you to address a large group. Then, send an informational letter and permission slip home with each child. Make sure to let parents know about the benefits of the program, logistics, time and place, contact people, etc.
8. Put in the mileage.
Make sure each child logs his or her miles and reward their progress. Whether they run or walk it all counts toward their mileage goal.
9. See you at the Final Mile Celebration.
Although not required, encourage everyone training to participate in the Final Mile Celebration of the Little Rockers Kids Marathon so they can complete their final mile and earn their medal on race day (Saturday, March 6, 2010).
There are a couple changes to this year’s program:
* New Location – River Market District. The Final Mile event has been moved to the River Market District so we can give the children the full marathon experience and accommodate our growing field of Little Rockers and their families.
* New Time – NOON. It's hoped the new time will make race morning a bit easier when trying to get the little ones ready. The 5K Fun Run/Walk has been moved to Saturday at 9:00 a.m.
Click here for more information on the Little Rock Marathon.