Fighting Obesity by Balancing Calories In with Calories Out

News & Press Releases

Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, Discovery Education and Sports Authority Award $50,000 in Prizes to Find Your Balance Challenge Winners

May 21, 2012

South Carolina, Arizona and Illinois Schools Selected For Creating Unique Programs Enacting Practical Improvements to Nutrition and Physical Activity

New Website Offers Educators and Families a One-Stop-Shop for Energy Balance Curriculum, Tools and Tips, Games and More

May 21, 2012 (WASHINGTON, D.C.) - The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF) and Discovery Education, in partnership with Sports Authority, today awarded schools in South Carolina, Arizona and Illinois with $50,000 in prizes as the winners of the 2012 Find Your Balance Challenge, a program designed to engage K-5 students in creating practical, long-term improvements in nutrition and physical activity at their school.   

The Grand Prize winner from Myrtle Beach Intermediate School in Myrtle Beach, S.C., will receive $30,000 in sporting equipment and cash awards from Sports Authority for their program on the importance of balancing calories-in with calories-out.   Principal Dana Penick entered on behalf of the school and recruited a Healthy Challenge Team from her fourth and fifth grade students.  An entirely student-led and student-written entry, Myrtle Beach Intermediate School recognized a need for energy balance education and set a goal to increase healthy snacking and physical activity.  

Integrating HWCF and Discovery Education’s Energy Balance 101 curriculum, students encouraged participation by creating an “exercise menu” and giving their peers choices for how to expend energy. The students engaged the entire community in their efforts through donations from the local Food Lion, asking parents to encourage exercise on weekends, hosting an event at the local recreation center and working with the cafeteria staff to provide more fruit and vegetable snack options.

“It is incredible to see students like those at Myrtle Beach Intermediate School take ownership of the energy balance message,” says HWCF President Lisa Gable.  “It is imperative that children learn the basics of active, healthy living at a young age.”

“We are proud to reward these students for exploring their natural curiosity and crafting unique and creative ways to educate their peers on important health issues,” said Mary Rollins, Discovery Education vice president. “The Find Your Balance Challenge is a fantastic example of how educators can give students the opportunity to extend what they learn in school beyond the walls of their classrooms and into their everyday lives.”

The school plans to use the $30,000 worth of Sports Authority merchandise toward new playground equipment.  They will also receive an Ultimate Energy Balance Party on May 30, 2012, featuring nutritious snacks and field events and a visit from Nutrition and Physical Education experts.

The two runners-up from Green Fields Country Day in Tucson, Ariz., and St. Philip the Apostle in Addison, Ill., will each receive $10,000 toward Sports Authority merchandise.  

The announcement comes in conjunction with the launch of a new-and-improved, HWCF’s public education campaign to encourage families to share meals and get active together.  It is now a one-stop-shop for all energy balance resources, including Energy Balance 101, a collection of free, standards-based curriculum that HWCF developed in partnership with Discovery Education.

About Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation
The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation brings together over 200 retailers, food and beverage manufacturers, restaurants, sporting goods and insurance companies, a professional sports organization, NGOs, trade associations, and the U.S. Army aimed at doing their part to help families reduce obesity, especially childhood obesity.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education transforms classrooms, empowers teachers and captivates students by providing high quality, dynamic, digital content for grades K-12 and community colleges. Powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world, Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital media, professional development, assessment tools and a passionate educator network to support districts in accelerating student achievement. Discovery Education services like Discovery Education streaming, Discovery Education Techbook and Discovery Education Higher Ed, are in more than half of all US schools and 35 countries around the world.  Explore the future of education at

About Sports Authority
Sports Authority is staffed with experts in all areas of sports and fitness related topics, and strives to be the ultimate "authority," both on and off the field. Whether in the game or cheering from the sidelines, Sports Authority is the leading destination for consumers to fulfill their own sports equipment needs, as well as find their favorite team's apparel. Sports Authority operates 468 stores in 45 states, and employs more than 15,000 associates nationwide. It also operates stores in Japan under a partnership with AEON Co., Ltd. The company's e-commerce website is located at

Contact: Emily Cullum

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