Children in Buffalo among first to get NERF ENERGY Game Kits,
ahead of national roll-out
Part of Hasbro's and UnitedHealthcare's efforts to help reduce
youth obesity through "exergaming" and education
Healthy competition among Buffalo middle-schoolers kicks off
initiative in New York; schools compete for "healthy school"
BUFFALO, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
UnitedHealthcare and Hasbro are collaborating on a national initiative
to encourage young people to be more active through "exergaming." More
than 200 fifth-graders at P.S. 94 and P.S. 76 in the City of Buffalo are
among the first students to receive NERF ENERGY Game Kits, which
monitors and rewards students for being physically active.
NERF ENERGY Game Kits, which include a NERF ENERGY Game Band activity
tracker, a NERF PRO FOAM soccer ball and the NERF ENERGY RUSH mobile
game, allow children to pick their own method of being active. As
children participate in physical activity, they earn "energy points"
that are tracked by the game band, and these points turn into screen
time to play the mobile game on a smartphone or tablet. The interactive
NERF ENERGY RUSH mobile game is an "endless runner" game that requires
players to turn, jump and avoid obstacles to complete courses and earn
power-ups to continue playing.
"Hasbro has long focused on making ‘healthy, active play' fun and
engaging for children and families by leveraging the popularity and play
pattern of NERF products," said Ted Fischer, vice president, business
development for Hasbro. "This collaboration enhances both companies'
commitment to positive impact on children and families."
As part of the Buffalo program, UnitedHealthcare and Hasbro are working
with the City of Buffalo Public Schools and Buffalo State College to
encourage students to continue to use the NERF ENERGY kits throughout
the school year by hosting a school-to-school "NERF ENERGY Challenge."
Approximately 200 fifth-grade students from two schools will compete to
accumulate the most energy points.
"We believe a little healthy competition between our fifth-graders will
reinforce the good habits these students are learning through the
program, while encouraging and rewarding team success," said Kriner
Cash, Ph.D., superintendent, City of Buffalo Public Schools.
Students from Buffalo State College will work with the individual
schools to help track results and plan activities to support the
challenge, which will run through the end of the school year. The
winning school will receive a grant to purchase physical education
equipment for their school.
Nationwide, approximately 17 percent of children and adolescents aged
two to 19 years are obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention, and nearly 30 percent of adults are obese, according to
United Health Foundation's America's
Health Rankings® Annual Report.
"We believe that young people will be motivated to move more when they
realize what their true activity levels are - and are rewarded for their
efforts," said Pat Celli, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of New
York. "We are grateful for the opportunity to work with schools and
community-based youth organizations to provide this innovative activity
program to more children."
This program builds on UnitedHealthcare's expertise in developing
practical solutions to encourage people to be more active, including the
use of exergames and gamification. UnitedHealthcare and Hasbro will
deliver 10,000 NERF ENERGY Game Kits to elementary schools and community
organizations in several states across the country. Children ages six to
12 will be eligible to receive the NERF ENERGY Game Kit at no cost.
Studies indicate that "exergaming" has the potential to reduce the
growing obesity epidemic among children and adults. A study
by George Washington University found exergames "spurred students to
move enough to meet the recommended intensity criteria for vigorous
activity" and that these games are "a useful alternative to traditional
is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by
simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and
wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care
providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit
programs for individuals, employers, military service members, retirees
and their families, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and
contracts directly with more than 1 million physicians and care
professionals, and 6,000 hospitals and other care facilities nationwide.
UnitedHealthcare is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:
UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company. For more
information, visit UnitedHealthcare at www.uhc.com
or follow @myUHC on Twitter.
HAS) is a global play and entertainment company committed to Creating
the World's Best Play Experiences. From toys and games to
television, movies, digital gaming and consumer products, Hasbro offers
a variety of ways for audiences to experience its iconic brands,
including NERF, MY LITTLE PONY, TRANSFORMERS, PLAY-DOH, MONOPOLY,
LITTLEST PET SHOP and MAGIC: THE GATHERING, as well as premier partner
brands. The Company's Hasbro Studios and its film label, Allspark
Pictures, are building its brands globally through great storytelling
and content on all screens. Through its commitment to corporate social
responsibility and philanthropy, Hasbro is helping to make the world a
better place for children and their families. Learn more at www.hasbro.com,
and follow us on Twitter (@Hasbro & @HasbroNews)
and Instagram (@Hasbro).
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Jen DeAngelis, 401-727-6833
Gordon Shydlo, 914-933-4613
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