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December 5, 2011
RELEASE 11-395
NASA Challenges Students To Train Like An Astronaut

WASHINGTON - An engaging new NASA program brings the excitement of space exploration to children learning to live a healthy lifestyle. Inspired by First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! initiative, NASA's Train Like an Astronaut program aims to increase opportunities both in and out of school for kids to become more physically and mentally active.

The program uses the excitement of space exploration and astronaut training to challenge, inspire and educate kids to set physical fitness goals and practice fitness and proper nutrition. Kids will explore mission challenges, learn the science behind nutrition and learn to train like an astronaut.

The activities used in the Train Like an Astronaut program were developed in cooperation with NASA scientists and fitness professionals who work directly with astronauts. Although designed for 8-12 year olds, the program is for anyone who is curious about space exploration and what it takes to be an astronaut.

"A part of the human space exploration mission is to inspire our youth to stay in school and master professions in the sciences and engineering fields to carry on this important work well into the 21st century," said Charles Lloyd, NASA's Human Research Program Education and Outreach Project manager. "We believe this starts with our youth in elementary school, and hope this ongoing fitness challenge will assist them with that lifelong endeavor."

The activities align with national education standards and are part of the physical education and health curriculum in schools throughout the country. Teachers easily can modify the activities to create an environment that supports all learners.

No special equipment is required and while adult supervision is suggested, the activities are routine and involve no heavy-lifting so children are free to play alone. Participants simply visit the website, find a favorite exercise and get started.

For more information about the program, visit:


For more information about the Mrs. Obama's Let's Move! initiative, visit:


For more information about other NASA education programs, visit:


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J.D. Harrington
Headquarters, Washington

William Jeffs
Johnson Space Center, Houston

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