Florida Forms Governor's Council on Physical Fitness

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist recently signed Executive Order 07-52, which creates the Governor's Council on Physical Fitness. These 15-20 members, serving terms that begin April 23, will develop a state plan of action to promote physical fitness and sound nutrition and reduce the rate of obesity and chronic disease among Floridians. The plan will be delivered to Crist in draft form by Aug. 1, with the final version delivered by Dec. 1.

Former Olympian Shannon Miller, tennis pro Jennifer Capriati, Major League players Rocco Baldelli and Ken Griffey Jr., and NBA star Shaquille O'Neal will serve on the council. Derrick Brooks, the council's chairman, is a linebacker for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

"I am so grateful to the professional athletes who are becoming involved with this important council," Crist said when he signed the order. "They are really setting an example for the people of Florida, especially the children we are encouraging to adopt and maintain healthy lifestyles." The order notes that an estimated 60 percent of adults in Florida are overweight or obese and an estimated 25 percent of high school-age children in the state are overweight or at risk of becoming overweight. Healthy habits will combat obesity and reduce the risk of many chronic diseases, it says.

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