Jump Rope for Heart is a program organized and sponsored by the American Heart Association. Money raised through the program funds science and research on heart disease.
“The students know jump-roping is a great way to exercise their heart, but it’s also a community service,” physical education teacher Linda Reque said. “A lot of them have had family members who have had a heart attack or stroke.”
The program is also part of the “Heart Unit” taught by physical education teachers at Burnt Hickory.
Thirty-three percent of men and 36 percent of women in the U.S. were considered obese between the years 2005 and 2008, a sharp increase from only 10 and 15 percent in the 1960-1962 range, according to the American Heart Association.
According to the American Heart Association, 392,210 American males died from cardiovascular disease in 2008 while 419,730 females died from the disease that year, facts from the same study show.
During the event in February, students jumped rope in groups, though someone had to be jumping the whole time.
Reque said participants did single-jumping and long-jumping, or partner jumping. They stopped about every seven minutes or so to hand out door prizes, as well.
The school’s goal for Jump Rope for Heart was $22,000, which is what it raised last year.
Since the school met its goal, administrators have agreed to be “slimed,” having a gooey substance poured over their head, after the school’s annual Field Days, an end-of-the-year celebration.
The school has been in the top 10 elementary schools in the state for raising money for Jump Rope for Heart for the past two years.
“The school has always done tremendous in Jump Rope for Heart,” Reque said. “It’s the kids — they get out and work hard for it.”