Snowshoeing introduced to P.E. classes in Virginia

News Release

Contact: SnowSports Industry Association, 703-566-9020,


Students Can Earn Awards from President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports By Combining Snow Sports With Other Activities

(MCLEAN, Va., August 25, 2004) – Through a partnership with the Fairfax County (VA) Public Schools, SnowSports Industries America (SIA) will introduce the first curriculum-based snowshoeing program for use this winter by physical education teachers in the county. Kathy Murphy, general manager of Tubbs Snowshoes, will present an “Introduction to Snowshoeing” workshop for elementary teachers and secondary school teachers during the County’s annual physical education teachers’ in-service professional days September 1 and 2, 2004 at George C. Marshall High School in Falls Church, Va. It is the county’s largest gathering of physical fitness professionals and this will be the first time that a snow sport has been included in the Fairfax County in-service. Teachers will learn how they can offer snowshoeing in their physical education classes this winter and what what their students need to know to enjoy the winter activity. Teachers also can demo snowshoes outside during the in-service.

The program is part of SIA’s “Winter Feels Good” campaign launched last year to educate adults and children about the health, fitness and social benefits of snow sports participation. SIA is the national, non-profit trade association that represents snow sports suppliers in the U.S. Fairfax is the 12th largest public school system in the U.S. with approximately 170,000 students.

In support of this new initiative, Melissa Johnson, executive director of the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, will address elementary level teachers on September 1. During the in-service training, teachers will learn how their students can earn a President’s Challenge Award that combines snow sports with other activities. Last winter, the President’s council partnered with SIA to organize the first President’s Council Clinic involving snow sports at Wintergreen Resort in Virginia.

“Grassroots programs of this nature are ideal for encouraging families to be active outside all year long,” said Johnson, who learned to snowshoe last winter during the clinic. “It’s so important to reach children at an early age with activities that they can continue to enjoy through adulthood.”

The in-service workshops explain modern snowshoes, and offer agility and flexibility exercises and games, and skill development based on two established snow sports programs - the Winter Kids Outdoor Learning Curriculum and Tubbs’ Winter Fit.

“Fairfax County is an excellent venue for this innovative program as many of our students have never before been exposed to snowshoeing.,” said Mary Marks, PH.D., health and physical education coordinator for Fairfax County Public Schools. “Teachers will have an outdoor activity to offer when there is snow on the ground.”

The Winter Feels Good campaign provdes educators throughout the U.S. comprehensive information and resources on how to include snow sports in school programming to help combat obesity. SIA is also working closely with the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) and the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD).

“This is a solid example of how several organizations can come together to offer a program that will get children more active,” said David Ingemie, president of SIA. “We are pleased to be working with Fairfax County Schools, the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, member companies like Tubbs and other educational and government organizations to offer new winter programs for children to enjoy,”

SnowSports Industries America, 8377-B Greensboro Drive, McLean, VA 22102-3587. Phone: (703) 556-9020, Fax: (703) 821-8276, E-mail: