Dubai Fitness Challenge: Principal inspires school community to get moving

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Dubai - He worked as a PE teacher before becoming a principal.

By Sarwat Nasir

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Published: Wed 23 Oct 2019, 11:05 PM

Last updated: Thu 24 Oct 2019, 1:07 AM

For one Dubai school principal, keeping fit is a lifestyle he has been following for decades. Now, he is inspiring hundreds of kids to follow suit.

Richard Drew, a 52-year-old principal at Jumeira Baccalaureate School, has a Master's Degree in Physical Education and Sports Science. So, since the Dubai Fitness Challenge was launched in 2017, it has always been an automatic #ChallengeAccepted for him.

He worked as a PE teacher before becoming a principal. He runs triathlons and is very excited that Dubai has this challenge to inspire its residents to live healthy and get in shape.

"Fitness is a key piece of who I am as an individual. I played a lot of team sports in my formative years. I, generally, try to stay healthy and do fitness activities throughout the year and most days, be it swimming, running and cycling, which are the key activities that I do," Drew told Khaleej Times.

Even though the fitness challenge started on a weekend, Drew's school kicked off their fitness journey well in advance to ensure they get to be a part of the movement.

The entire school, about 800 students, 100 staff members and over 40 parents, took part in the initial activities before the half term break.

"We had the whole school out doing Zumba, along with staff and parents, and that was organised by our director of sports and our PE department," Drew said.

"We start school back on Sunday and we have all sorts of events and activities lined up during the early morning and lunchtime sessions. We'll have some more school events that we'll do before the challenge ends.

"We really had something going on at school before the 30x30 started, it's called Fitnovation. This was an idea that started five years ago, where we combined the month of November and fitness. We focus on health and fitness and we have parents who get involved as well."

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