Olympic Gold Medalist Urges Active Kids

By: 13 News
By: 13 News

An Olympic gold medalist visited Topeka, hoping to help kids in the battle against childhood obesity.

Barbara Slater is the youngest female gold medalist in Olympic track and field history, winning when she was just 15-years old. She spoke Tuesday at the "Healthy Cultures, Healthy Kansas -- Moving Forward" conference luncheon hosted by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Slater says sports play a vital role in fighting obesity in our children and in building character and self-confidence. She also believes playtime has changed, to the detriment of kids' physical well-being. She says play used to mean using one's imagination and being active with whatever items were at hand. Now, she says, if it doesn't have a battery, kids don't want to play with it.

The conference helps recognize April as National Minority Health Month.

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