Aggies MOVE has Texas A&M athletes virtually interacting with elementary school students to coach and educate them on the importance of healthy living.
BRYAN, Texas — Carlos Luna’s second-grade PE class met in the Botham Elementary School gym Wednesday morning. However, Luna is not the one taking the class through the day’s exercises. Athletes from Texas A&M are crashing the class to help get them moving.
“[The second graders] think it’s fun and everything, but it’s something they’re going to take with them for the rest of their lives,” said Luna.
Aggie MOVE is an organization that consists of A&M athletes. They led elementary-aged students around the Bryan/College Station area through workouts. The Aggies also educate the students on healthy living, like what is a healthy diet and how to stay active outside of school.
Luna’s class meets Aggie MOVE biweekly. Wednesday was the third time the second graders were able to workout with the collegiate athletes virtually.
“I got to tell you, [the second graders] are in really good shape from all the running because there is a lot of running,” Luna laughs.
Currently, Bryan ISD does not allow visitors inside school buildings, so the Aggies had to get creative when it comes to working out. They are utilizing Zoom to run through workouts with the second graders, all while in the comfort of their bedrooms.
“It shows them that they can do it from their own room and they can run around the house,” said Tina Christie, a senior on the Texas A&M equestrian team. “They can do anything.
Christie got involved because she wanted to be able to interact with the community around her. She had been part of Aggies Read prior and had a fun time. Because of the situation with COVID-19, Christie hasn’t had as many opportunities to do something with local schools. She jumped at the chance when asked to be part of Aggies MOVE.
“I love when [the students] ask about my sport because equestrian is a sport that is kind of weird and not a lot of people have heard of,” Christie said. “It’s almost always, ‘Oh I really like horses too,’ or ‘I rode a horse once.’ I love to hear the stories that they have to tell when they hear about my sport.”
Christie believes the younger generation listens to what she and the others in Aggie MOVE have to say about living a healthy lifestyle. The opportunity working alongside college athletes can stick with the students through life, especially with any advice they give.
“Their parents I’m sure tell them all the time, but I think through these programs we can serve as role models for them and someone to look up to,” Christie said. “I think that’s really valuable.”
Since the activity is over Zoom, Luna was able to incorporate some of his at-home learners in Wednesday’s PE class. He also hopes to be able to continue bringing the Aggies into class once schools are back open to visitors.