National Multisport Nonprofit Fights Childhood Obesity and Mental Health Barriers for Youth Through Technology

February 2, 2021

In Its Nationwide Youth & Junior Virtual Triathlon Amid the Covid19 Pandemic

Baltimore, MD. – The International Association of Black Triathletes (IABT) is a national humanitarian nonprofit dedicated to providing advancement for urban youth and communities they represent through the sport of triathlon by being a gateway to reduce academic and health disparities and to increase opportunities for collegiate studies, internships, and economic development. The IABT announces its 2021 Nationwide Youth and Junior Virtual Triathlon for elementary school, middle school, and high school students. Students from single-discipline and multisport backgrounds are highly encouraged to take part in these wonderful initiatives, athletes and non-athletes alike as well.

From the comfort of their own homes and with an opportunity to involve siblings/friends/families while increasing teamwork, leadership, communication, and physical activity, youth ages 6-17 years old can take part in IABT’s Nationwide Youth & Junior Virtual Triathlon event. Getting healthy and active while competing against their best self allow youth to have fun, reduce stress and receive AWESOME Swag Bags filled with rewards for a dynamic achievement awaits them.

Using technology as a solution, IABT’s CEO, Dr. Tekemia Dorsey introduces its third initiative focused on youth across the globe that takes place in the comfort of their own homes and designed to get them active, reducing the increase health and mental disparities caused during the pandemic while keeping them focused on a brighter future.

Obesity and COVID-19 are pandemics that negatively affect the health and well-being of children. “Obesity is a common, serious, and costly chronic disease. Having obesity puts people at risk for many other serious chronic diseases and increases the risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Everyone has a role to play in turning the tide against obesity and its disproportionate impact on racial and ethnic minority groups.

Regular physical activity helps you feel better, sleep better, and reduce anxiety. It can also help with preventing weight gain and when combined with calorie reduction, helps with weight loss.14 Physical activity can also help prevent diseases that increase a person’s chances of having severe illness from COVID-19 such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.14 Emerging research suggests it may also help boost immune function” (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, December 2020).

Beginning in April 2020, the proportion of children’s mental health–related ED visits among all pediatric ED visits increased and remained elevated through October. Compared with 2019, the proportion of mental health–related visits for children aged 5–11 and 12–17 years increased approximately 24%. and 31%, respectively (Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Nov 2020).

Sports teach lessons and promote life-long health. Triathlon is a sport for anyone and everyone. It’s inclusive, but still growing which is why it’s important to have initiatives put on by IABT such as the TRIAD via the NCAA & Collegiate Club Combine, Virtual Tour, and Virtual Triathlon to teach and grow the sport of triathlon. Triathlon taught me how to get the most out of myself, learn from my mistakes, and create healthy life-long habits. I hope others can learn from and stay healthy through triathlon.

Gwen Jorgensen – 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist

First as a mother, then as a coach, I believe that we need to be using our resources to fuel the youth of today, so that they can discover their authentic selves to build a better society for tomorrow.  With this initiative, we have the opportunity to impact diverse groups by getting them plugged into opportunities that otherwise might not be available.  Through sport, we can positively impact confidence and keep the motivational flame burning.  I’m excited to be a partner!

Christina Roberts, Owner–Enflyte, LLC, NCAA/Collegiate Club Virtual COMBINE Committee Member

 Not much tops the satisfaction one feels when guiding youth down the path of success.  This is especially the case for those who are underserved and underrepresented.

The attributes of good character such as respect, responsibility, confidence, optimism, courage and integrity (to name a few), are important both on and off the field of play.  What better way to build upon this foundation for underserved and underrepresented youth than through the IABT initiative.

Carol A. Coram, Ed.D., NCAA/Collegiate Club Virtual COMBINE Committee Member, USA Triathlon athlete and official, USAT Foundation Ambassador, USAT Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access Advisory Council (Member)

Helping young people connect with a wide variety of opportunities is critical to creating bridges to future success.  For schools hoping to create access for diverse populations this can serve as an introduction to under represented communities.

Bryant Howard, NCAA Women’s Varsity Head Coach

Lenoir Rhyne University

Learn more about IABT at www.theiabt.org

About The International Association of Black Triathletes (IABT)

IABT is the only International African American and Women Owned National Non-profit Humanitarian Charitable organization in the multisport industry, headquartered in Baltimore, MD. IABT Multisport Racing is the only African American and Women Owned Multisport Racing Company in the country.