Wallace and Johnson join Astros trainers for PLAY Campaign
By Rachel Frey
Houston Astros MLB Urban Youth Academy participants were welcomed to Minute Maid Park on Monday, July 18, to as part of the 2011 “PLAY” Campaign.
PLAY (Promoting a Lifetime of Activity for Youth) is a public awareness campaign developed by the Professional Baseball Athletic Trainers Society (PBATS) to encourage youths nationwide to be active, eat right and sustain a healthy lifestyle.
The kids were split into four groups and they rotated through four different stations. The first station was with Roberta Anding, who is the nutritionist for the Houston Astros and the Houston Texans. She spoke about the importance of hydration, healthy food choices, and how performance-enhancing drugs are unnecessary with a proper diet.
The second station was with Astros Assistant Athletic Trainer Rex Jones, who taught the young ball players the stretches the Astros do before each game to stay limber. Nate Lucero, Astros Head Athletic Trainer, showed them agility drills that will help improve their athletic ability in any sport.
The final station featured Clint Faught from the Taylor Hooton Foundation. The foundation was founded in honor of Taylor Hooton, a high school baseball player who committed suicide after using anabolic steroids. They learned about the effects performance-enhancing drugs have on a young person’s body and mind. Additionally, they were taught the warning signs of steroid abuse, so they can recognize them.
After the kids had rotated through the stations, Chris Johnson and Brett Wallace joined them to talk about their active childhoods, which helped shape the athletes they are today. Both players played multiple sports, and advised the youths to stay active as much as possible.
The day wrapped up with a healthy lunch for the Urban Youth Academy players in the FiveSeven Grille.