Although I was barely two years old when the King of Rock and Roll swung his hips for the last time, I have been aware for years of several dances that Elvis Presley performed while singing “Jailhouse Rock.” Performing an Elvis dance for 30 seconds was one of ten mini-activities performed by 23 kids from St. Luke’s Baptist Church as their warm-up. This warm-up was followed by an additional thirty minutes of CATCH activities and requests for rest and water!!!
The Jewels and Brothers from St. Luke’s Baptist Church, varying in ages from 10 years old to 18, visited our YMCA in Paterson for a few hours of physical activity fun and healthy eating education. Rutgers Cooperative Extension provided the diet and nutritional portion of the day and what started as a twenty minute presentation turned into an hour of questions and a positive realization of the importance of food quality and portion control. The physical rest provided by the nutritionist’s workshop allowed for their restoration of energy and had them ready to use the rest of our facility. The majority swam while the rest tested each other’s jump shot on the basketball court for the remainder of their time in our facility.
During their warm up, the kids and teenagers did their wall push-ups, jumping jacks, took their heart rates, but paused when they arrived to the “dance like Elvis for 30 seconds” portion. Some asked what an Elvis dance would look like while others even asked, “Who’s Elvis?” One of the wonderful things about group activities is its flexibility. Instead of 30 seconds of dancing like Elvis…why not “do the dougie?” If the kids can do it…if Michelle Obama can do it…why can’t I???