Select Health’s YouTube Channel Offers Exercise Videos for Children Hosted by Marcus Lattimore

Eight Videos Help Address Barriers to Health and Allow Children to Stay Active during COVID-19

October 22, 2020 - North Charleston, S.C.

First Choice by Select Health of South Carolina, the state's oldest and largest Medicaid managed care organization and part of the AmeriHealth Caritas Family of Companies, has launched a series of eight exercise videos for children hosted by Marcus Lattimore, legendary former running back for the USC Gamecocks. The videos aim to address barriers to health during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing families with children ages 9 to 14 an opportunity for improved physical fitness.

According to the most recent Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) data, South Carolina has the 14th highest rate of adult obesity in the nation, and lack of physical activity is a contributing factor to this epidemic. For youth ages 10 to 17, 17.9%  are obese, giving South Carolina the seventh highest ranking for this age group among all states and the District of Columbia. This data underscores the need for all South Carolinians to have access to safe, affordable, and convenient places to be physically active. These YouTube videos help address the need, and are especially timely now that some organized outdoor activities may be closed or restricted due to the pandemic.

"Fun physical activity can also help relieve the stress children are feeling from having their normal lives and activities disrupted by the pandemic," said Dr. Kirt Caton, market chief medical officer at Select Health of South Carolina. "Our hope is that these exercise videos can be the start of a lifelong love of exercise for children."

Children may watch the YouTube videos on a PC, laptop, tablet, or even a smartphone (however, accessing the videos should be with parental/guardian permission and supervision). Visitors are encouraged to subscribe to the Select Health YouTube channel to also enjoy healthy cooking videos that are co-hosted by Lattimore and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control SNAP-Ed program.* The videos, which were shot in June 2019, are available at www.youtube.com/firstchoicebyselecthealth.

First Choice by Select Health of South Carolina has worked to help South Carolina children stay healthy for 25 years. Since its introduction in 2013, the First Choice Fit program with Marcus Lattimore has helped thousands of South Carolina children improve their health through education and fun activities. Being First Choice Fit means eating right, being active, and seeing your health care provider for an annual well visit or check-up — even if you have not been sick.

Select Health is working with South Carolina Educational Television (SCETV) to make the videos accessible to students and teachers throughout the state via SCETV's Distance Education Learning initiative. This initiative utilizes broadcast channels and digital platforms and also aims to reach those without high speed internet access through a process called datacasting. SCETV says datacasting has the capacity to eventually reach 98% of the state and is being piloted in Fairfield County School District, Jasper County School District and York School District 1 this fall.

"We're thrilled to be partnering with Select Health so that these exercise videos for children can be utilized by teachers, parents and students across the state," said Dr. Stephanie Frazier, vice president of education for SCETV. "Partnerships like this one are critical as we seek to provide South Carolina's education community with diverse, curriculum-based content in this challenging time."

"First Choice Fit programs like the Fit Camps and this four-week exercise program improve fitness while also challenging youth to develop as individuals," said Lattimore. "Good health, strong values, dignity, and respect are the keys to success in life."

"Marcus has devised a program in which children by the end of one month, may change how they feel about themselves physically and mentally," said Select Health of South Carolina Market President Courtnay Thompson. "We want our families to eat right and be active year round."

The video format allows Lattimore to demonstrate and model proper exercise technique for viewers. "The idea is to add two exercises per week so that children would do two the first week, four the second week, etc. until they are able to complete all eight exercises together by the end of week four," said Lattimore. He suggests the following schedule and offers explanations of each exercise: **

Week one:

  • Perfect Squats (1 set of 25 reps) – Squats help tone legs and promote body-wide muscle building.
  • RDLs (1 set of 15 reps) – Designed to develop the posterior chain muscles, this exercise helps strengthen the core and lower body with one move.

Week two:

  • Pushups (3 sets of 5) – Pushups target the chest, shoulders, and triceps, and work the core, back and legs.
  • High Knees (3 sets of 25 seconds) – High knees increases the heart rate and improve coordination and flexibility.

Week three:

  • Lunges (3 sets of 8) – Lunges help develop lower-body strength and endurance; a great exercise for beginners.
  • Shoulder taps (3 sets of 5 each side) – Shoulder taps target the abdominal muscles and core.

Week four:

  • Planks (3 sets of 25 seconds) – Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles and engage all major core muscle groups.
  • Turkish get ups (3 sets of 3 each side) – This is a total body exercise that increases torso stabilization and overall strength.

For more information, visit www.marcuslattimore.com or follow Lattimore on Facebook (MarcusLattimoreOfficial), Twitter (@marcuslattimore) and Instagram (marcuslattimore). For more information about First Choice Fit, visit www.selecthealthofsc.com.

*These videos help you learn about healthy eating. If you have a health condition with specific dietary needs, talk to your provider before cooking anything featured in the videos.

**These videos help you learn information about different exercise techniques. Always consult with your health care provider before starting or changing an exercise program.