It is well documented that people with intellectual disabilities are less active than the general population. This is not due to their disability, but the lack of access to fitness education and opportunities that fit their needs. At Special Olympics, our mission is to provide sports opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities. In order for our athletes to truly perform at their best, they must be fit and healthy. The reality is that many of our athletes only practice their sport once a week, and competition seasons are only about three months long. This leaves a large gap throughout the year where athletes live sedentary lifestyles, putting them at risk for obesity, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Special Olympics is filling that gap with three models of programs that encourage year-round fitness.
Fit Families, SOfit, and Unified Fitness Clubs are spreading worldwide throughout Special Olympics Programs. Each model works in a slightly different fashion to motivate, educate, and inspire fitness through physical activity, healthy eating, and proper hydration. So far, the programs have shown to be effective ways to encourage lifestyle change.
Learn more about our programs here