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The gift of fitness

Physical education teacher Cindy Condon-Duffy shows off new gym equipment at Prince Street School.

It was like Christmas morning when Phys. Ed teacher Cindy Condon-Duffy brought hockey bags full of new athletic gear back to Prince Street School.

"Oh I love that game," one student shouted as she pulled a game of Ladder Ball out of one of the stuffed bags.

Hula hoops, foam rollers, frisbees, yoga mats, the hockey bags were jam packed with goodies to get kids moving.

Prince Edward Island has partnered with Canadian Tire in Active at School, an initiative to kids to be active for 60 minutes a day.

Representatives from a dozen Island schools were at the Royalty Centre last week as the new gear was unloaded from a truck.

Grade 6 student Miara Weeks - wearing a go!PEI hat - spun a hula hoop on her hips.

"My favourite part of school is gym class," she said breathlessly.

Physical activity improves learning, productivity and self-confidence. Studies show nine out of ten kids don't get the recommended hour a day of physical activity.

Through Active at School, Canadian Tire has committed to a $250,000 multi-year investment towards physical activity initiatives in the province.

Active at School will help support the School Health Grant through equipment donations and marketing efforts. Schools will be eligible for visits from high-profile athletes to inspire kids to get active.

"This is very exciting, this is stuff we wouldn't normally be able to afford to purchase," Condon said.

"It's a wonderful program. Some of our students come to school Monday morning and tell me they've been inside all weekend. It is so important we keep them active in school."

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