Body by Jake: How a nationwide fitness mission has made its way to Sturgis Williams Middle School
STURGIS, S.D.– “Body by Jake” creator Jake Steinfeld helped Sturgis Williams Middle School unveil their brand-new “Don’t Quit” Fitness Center Wednesday, and talked more on his involvement with the National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils.
How long has the National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils been around?
The National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils has been working since 2012 to bring new and state-of-the-art fitness centers to elementary and middle school kids. Their goal to install the facilities at schools in all 50 states.
How many states have they visited?
Steinfeld and other members of the program have visited 42 states so far, averaging about four states a year. This year they visited Idaho, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. A total of three centers are planned for South Dakota. Newell School District received a new facility before Sturgis Williams, and the third school has yet to be announced.
Why bring these facilities to schools?
Steinfeld works would help bring schools these facilities as part of encouraging physically healthy children and communities, along with helping them maintain mental health. “I was an overweight kid. I had a bad stutter growing up. My dad bought me a set of weights and I was 13 and it changed my life,” he explained. “Not only did the weights build my body, but I built my confidence and self esteem. And to be able to give that back to schools like the Scoopers here, where you see the kids when they come into this fitness center– their eyes are like like saucers and the enthusiasm and the excitement because not only are they just building in their bodies, but, as I said, confidence and self-esteem.”
Who is the facility for?
The $100,000 facility is meant for the whole community, Steinfeld explains. While it is built and established on the school’s campus, he also wants it to be open after school-hours and even on weekends for the Sturgis community to use. “This is a gift that really starts to give when we leave,” he said. “Because all of the pomp and circumstance is over, but the fitness center stays. and that is the beautiful thing about it.”