In a move to place a greater focus on team sports, the Trump administration has revised the title of the “President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition,” to the “President’s Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition” and announced plans to increase emphasis on youth sports participation.
In an executive order, Donald Trump wrote, “My Administration recognizes the benefits of youth sports participation, physical activity and a nutritious diet in helping create habits that support a healthy lifestyle and improve the overall health of the American people. My Administration therefore aims to expand and encourage youth sports participation, and to promote the overall physical fitness, health, and nutrition of all Americans.
“Good health, including physical activity and proper nutrition, supports Americans’, particularly children’s, well‑being, growth and development. Participating in sports allows children to experience the connection between effort and success, and it enhances their academic, economic and social prospects. Many of America’s leaders attribute their lifetime achievements to lessons learned through sports participation and athletic activity. Additionally, youth sports help working parents and guardians by providing their children opportunities to engage in productive, positive activities outside of school. Unfortunately, during the past decade, youth participation in team sports has declined. As of 2016, only 37 percent of children played team sports on a regular basis, down from 45 percent in 2008. Particularly troubling is that sports participation disproportionately lags among young girls and children who are from economically distressed areas.”
As a companion to the executive order, Ivanka Trump wrote in an op-ed for NBC News on Tuesday: “Whether a student aspires to be an Olympic athlete or simply enjoys being a part of a team, youth sports gives children and young adults a unique opportunity to develop their talents, to learn how to work with others and to persevere in the face of adversity.”