Jr. Suns/Jr. Mercury members Get Fit with the Phoenix Suns Gorilla

By Allison Leach, Jrsuns.com
Posted: December 15th, 2008

The Get Fit with the Phoenix Suns program was launched on Friday, December 5th at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Scottsdale McKee Branch. The NBA and the Phoenix Suns has partnered up and created this program to educate Jr. Suns/Jr. Mercury members. There are 5 Key Elements to the program: nutrition, hydration, stretching, conditioning, and maintaining good sleeping habits. The Phoenix Suns Gorilla, Suns trainer Erik Phillips, and Mercury trainer Ben Hadley have helped launched the program.

The program emphasizes nutrition as one of its main elements. The Gorilla and Ben Hadley talked to the kids about following the Food Pyramid, eating at good times with the right snacks, and meal ideas before and after vigorous activity. Hydration is also key to the Get Fit program. The Gorilla and Ben Hadley explained to the Jr. Suns/Jr. Mercury members the importance of keeping hydrated, the difference between water and Gatorade, and why soda is bad for you. They also emphasized that when playing basketball, or any other sport, itís important to stretch properly to prevent injuries. Ben Hadley and the Gorilla showed the participants different ways to stretch on and off the court. Just as much as stretching is important, Ben talked about how conditioning contributes a great deal to your performance. He showed the participants some great routines and movements to keep them active and fit. He and the Gorilla also gave them some easy tips for getting cardio in during the day especially with things like defensive slides, butt kicks, skips, back peddling, and high knees. One of the most important things to Get Fit is to get a good amount of rest and a good nightís sleep no matter what your age. The Gorilla showed the participants what not to eat before going to bed while Ben explained how many hours per night are recommended in order to stay fit and healthy.

Former Suns player Tom Chambers and Mercury Assistant Coach Bridget Pettis were also on hand to talk about the importance of getting fit and held a clinic. The clinic focused on passing, dribbling, shooting, and rebounding. After the clinic ended, the participants had a chance to sit down for a Q&A with Tom Chambers and Bridget Pettis. The participants also received autographs from the popular alumni.

For more information about the camps, please call (602) 594-CAMP or e-mail: Camps@Suns.com.