On Sunday, November 3rd, Emory University DPT hosted the Fall Fit Fest in partnership with Gigi’s Playhouse, a Down syndrome awareness center, and Chastain Horse Park. This fall carnival aimed to promote awareness and provide tools for the children and families at Gigi’s Playhouse to build healthy living habits. A committee of 11 Emory University DPT second year students planned the event with Dr. Rogozinski and the generous support of Gigi’s Playhouse and Chastain Horse Park. Overall, 64 Emory University DPT first, second, and third year students volunteered by leading over 120 children and their families through the day’s activities.
The Fall Fit Fest included a variety of games, obstacle courses, music, dancing, crafts, and the opportunity to interact with horses. All attendees were encouraged to participate, but the activities were specifically targeted toward the Down syndrome population. Each activity focused on strength training, coordination, balance, cardiovascular endurance, and nutrition. Additionally, Emory University DPT students created and provided resources for the families with information on current fitness guidelines and ideas for physical activity at home. Of the participants who completed a satisfaction survey, 100% strongly agreed the event was well organized, enjoyable, and valuable. It was also agreed that the volunteers were highly helpful and friendly. The Fall Fit Fest generated excitement for future events and a continued partnership with Gigi’s Playhouse and Chastain Horse Park.