Winning Ways for Kids to World Cup - Sports can Make All the Difference in Health and Fitness

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The World Cup is coming to a close but families can still get in the game with fancy footwork and finesse at a new sports experience at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. Visitors will also learn about the only American to compete in FIFA’s World Cup four times.

The goal is family fun and fitness

With so much running all over the field, soccer is an excellent sport for overall cardiovascular health. It also excels at teaching children the fundamentals of teamwork, communication and hand-eye coordination.

Amid the excitement of the World Cup, visions of black and white soccer balls are bouncing around in the heads of youngsters dreaming of playing the game on a bigger stage. And now there is a place parents can get on the field with kids to help them learn to play like the pros.

There’s a lot of fancy footwork to put the ball on the field at the Subway® Soccer Experience. It’s one of 12 sports experiences at the new Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.

Young children and adults who want to “Bend it like Beckham” or learn about DaMarcus Beasley, the only American to play in FIFA’s World Cup four times, will try out soccer fundamentals and enjoy goal-kicking opportunities on the new turf covered playing field at the Sports Legends Experience.

“Soccer brings people together, different races and cultures – it’s a world sport," says Beasley. "It can bring happiness to people whether they’re playing or going out and rooting for their teams; there’s a global thing to it."

The primary goal of the health, fitness and sports complex is to create a family focused experience that will inspire visitors to be active while creating healthy habits that will stay with them for a lifetime.

“With so much running all over the field, soccer is an excellent sport for overall cardiovascular health. It also excels at teaching children the fundamentals of teamwork, communication and hand-eye coordination. With the appropriate safety equipment such as shin guards, soccer is a relatively safe sport for children and adults alike,” says Riley Children’s Health pediatrician Dr. Meagan O’Neill

There will be free play and coaches in orange shirts and hats in the Subway® Soccer Experience within the Sports Legends Experience who will lead families in different skills and drills in an effort to promote physical activity, team building and good sportsmanship

The Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience is an immersive learning experience that allows children and families to participate in health and fitness activities through sports as they are inspired by some of the greatest athletes of all time. The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis partnered with experts from Riley Children’s at Indiana University Health, which operates the only nationally ranked children’s hospital in Indiana, to bring this experience to life. For more information about Riley Children’s Sports Legends Experience, visit childrensmuseum.org/sports-legends. For more information about Riley Children’s Health or The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, visit http://www.rileychildrens.org and http://www.childrensmuseum.org respectively.

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