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YMCA’s Kids Move program encourages children to get fit and have fun

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Every Thursday at Riverfront Park in Chippewa Falls Brenda Johnson leads local youth in exercise and dance to improve their health and encourage fitness. Kids Move is a Chippewa Falls YMCA program that incorporates playtime with dance.

“It’s fun and that’s what movement should be,” Johnson said. “We just want kids to be kids, get silly and enjoy moving their bodies.”

Johnson has been teaching the class for about 18 months.

For now, the free class is taught outdoors but it will be back inside at the Chippewa Falls YMCA when summer is over.

Johnson said she wants the class to feel playful.

“I do a mix of dancing and songs and always incorporate a welcome activity to promote connections between myself and the kids,” she said in an email.

Carrie Mathwig, Healthy Living director at the Chippewa Falls YMCA, said the program was created for 4 to 11-year-olds, but anyone is welcome to join.

“We would never turn anyone away if they were older or younger, assuming that they wanted to participate,” she said. “We just want to help the community be healthy.”

Mathwig said she encourages all children to check out the program. It’s fun and engaging, she said.

“It's really just designed to get kids motivated and moving. Brenda Johnson does lots of different activities — she does coordinated dances and she always goes above and beyond to make the kids feel comfortable with each other and herself,” Mathwig said. “We’re lucky to have her.”


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