Virtual Facebook page helps Special Olympians stay healthy, active

Virtual fitness fuels Special Olympians

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT)- The Special Olympics of Virginia Summer Games are some of the more uplifting things one can witness. But the games are part of a number of programs that will be absent from 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic. It’s the right call by the Special Olympics, though a disappointing one.

"We do deal with a population that is vulnerable with immunity," said Bryan Schubring, Director of Sports and Competition for Special Olympics of Virginia.

The isolation means that many athletes are losing time to interact with their peers at practices and events, but Special Olympics is going digital to try to help with that. They've created a Virtual Fitness Facebook page where athletes can share their workouts and more.

"The fact that on this fitness page they can at least see each other, keep up with each other, post encouraging messages to each other or even challenge each other to a workout has been really great, uplifting and keeping everybody in a positive mindset, noted Schubring."

The page isn't going to waste. In 10 days, it's received more than 11,000 likes and is filled with workout videos and messages of encouragement from athletes and supporters.

"It's really building a sense of community that even though we're not together, we can still be together and show each other what we're doing to stay fit and get ready for our upcoming sports season."

It's more than just fitness. Staying healthy during this time period is especially crucial, so nutrition tips are also relayed to the group.

"Eating healthy and getting exercise helps build and strengthen that immune system," said Schubring. "If you got all those gears grinding together, odds are things are going to turn out OK for all of us."

For more information on Special Olympics and to learn how you can help, click here.

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