Area26 news & updates
September 2020 | Issue 13
Let me win, but if I cannot win,
Let me be brave in the attempt.
From the Editor...
And so we roll into Fall. (Or, in 2020, another season of Zoom and Webchat meetings instead of doing things in person...)

Special Olympics at all levels (International to Area 26...) has developed and committed to a set of programs designed to keep everyone active and as connected as possible as we wait out the pandemic and the upcoming flu season safely. This month's issue will report on, and provide links to, the various program options for you (athletes, family members, volunteers...) to participate.

The main SO program this term will be the Combine. This is very important to everyone, as with no regular sports this Fall, we need to stay healthy, and regular exercise is a big part of that! Please read through and respond to the program invites...
Virtual Activities ...
Hi Athletes and Parents,

This is your virtual coordinator, Abby, here!

Normally I run the soccer program, but because our health is #1 priority right now we're moving virtual. I'm working with all our wonderful coaches and volunteers to find ways to keep yall FIT and ready to get back on the field when things open up! 
We'll be doing a Town Hall meeting on September 8 at 7pm ET to talk more about all of these opportunities. Please join us at the meeting if you are able, but otherwise, please read about what we're doing below!

Here's a quick review of what we're offering starting in September. You can also find all of this on the website:
Fitness Combine Prep and Team Practices
As many of you know, Special Olympics Virginia has put together a program for all our athletes to compete virtually, focused on strength, endurance and flexibility exercises key to staying fit. Sign-up is due by the 9th, so either talk to your coach about registering your team, or register as an individual and train with your team!! 
Additional Fitness Opportunities
As an area, we'll be able to offer some extra classes each month for our athletes! The first will be a Bootcamp with yours truly (ME!) on Tuesday the 1st at 7pm. Check out all the other options to stay physically and mentally active here: 
On My Own Time
If your schedule makes it hard to meet our live virtual events and practices, check out what we have to offer for exercises you can fit into your busy schedule!
I'm Feeling Overwhelmed- HELP!
We understand this is a lot. Whether you need some motivation or IT help to get Zoom set up, please refer to our resources page for Athletes, Parents and Coaches alike.
It's so important for us to all band together during these times and motivate each other. We hope to see you on the interwebs getting your sweat on!

Fit-5 Fitness Pals Monthly Update...
Tom, Chris and Kyler...

Masked, or unmasked (and socially distanced, these days), the Fitness Pals are still leading the way with new ideas on how to stay in shape...
Kyler with Pro Football Player Jake Payne in an outdoor workout
Chris getting his Boogie on!!
Tom, the all-time pushup king, continues his multi-month session...
Staying Active is the key for now!!
While staying physically active and fit is definitely a focus, we all need to keep busy doing things that matter and things that are just FUN. Here are some pictures of our Area members and how they are using the time...
Jeff Cogswell's 31st Birthday!!
Roomies Kyler Reese and Jeyoon Cho distancing while Wii-competing
Athletes Zach and Ben Fowler with Coach Christine Fowler taking in the beach sunset
Mark and Ben Fowler in the surf..
Part of the GMU Neighborhood Posse celebrating Christian Graham's Birthday
Roomies Chris Robinson, Christian Graham and David Kellet-Forsythe showing they KNOW how to MOVE
Tom Merz shows off his Birthday Apparel
Michael England and Austin Ward Chillin' before their workout
Ashley Mann celebrating  with Tammy Kiser on her birthday
Max, Kyler, Jeyoon and Jeff out walking getting their daily exercise in
Joey Wheeler and Caitlin Corrigan playing socially distanced bocce!
Hoang Phan celebrates his birthday...
Olivia Baker makes great art!
Kyler Reese and Coach Zach working the lane
Allie Robbins puzzling her way out of COVID!!
Coaches Ray and Nicole Holdener socializing socially distanced
Kyle "I live to drive" Holdener in the DRIVER'S Seat with his best ride!
Max Hershberger not falling off a rider in Warrenton!!
Elliot Metz Dorm room ZOOM Karaoke
We love to have your inputs - so keep busy and...
Stay Healthy, Stay Active!!
Sport of the Month: The Combine!
  • while we wait for the regular sports to begin anew, here is a quick rundown on what exactly IS a Combine...
The 2020 Fall Fitness Combine was designed with flexibility in mind. The goal of
the program is to provide Special Olympics Virginia athletes and partners with an
eight-week training program that will increase strength, flexibility and overall
physical performance that can be done at home or at a team practice.

Participants will strive to demonstrate increased physical performance week over
week with improved measurables for a variety of competitions.

Fitness assessments can be conducted virtually or in-person following Special
Olympics International, Special Olympics Virginia, state and local government
guidelines. Throughout the testing portion, athletes likely will need a buddy to
help with measurements, timing and counting! This guide will walk you through
the entire program, what to expect, how to test and how to become more fit!

Athletes will participate in 9 events, with supplies you can get at home...

ENDURANCE • lane slides
AGILITY • three cone drill
UPPER BODY ENDURANCE • power punches
UPPER BODY STRENGTH • modified OR traditional push-ups
LOWER BODY POWER • standing long jump OR wall sits
LOWER BODY ENDURANCE • chair squats OR body weight squats
FLEXIBILITY • sit & reach
CORE • curl-ups
BALANCE • one-leg stand
Equipment Needed

CONES • food cans, tape, rocks, flags, water bottles
STOPWATCH • cell phone, timer, website, analog clock, watch
CHAIR • couch, bench
TAPE MEASURE • floor tiles, use your steps to measure length,
or a dollar bill to measure inches
TAPE • chalk, string, lines on the ground

GOLD • athlete earns an improved fitness score higher than 31% SILVER • athlete earns an improved fitness score between 21% - 30% BRONZE • athlete earns an improved fitness score between 11% - 20% PARTICIPATION • athlete earns an improved fitness score between 1% - 10%
Everything you (and your family and coaches...) need to know is in the Playbook - just click the button...
Revealing the Champion in all of us...
Athletes Corner
  • by Billy Duquette
Starting this week, Special Olympics Virginia will begin their Fall fitness combine.

The fitness combine will be an eight-week training program that the athletes will be paired up with a unified partner over the time as they increase their strength, flexibility, and overall performance from their homes. During the cycle, the athletes will record their data on individual scoring sheets to get awards on how they perform. 

Everyone should sign up for this really fun way to be brave in the attempt!

Talk to you next month,
Hail and Farewell
The Area 26 Council is happy to welcome Katherine Martin to their ranks. She has been involved with Special Olympics for over 15 years, and is currently a coach for gymnastics and cheer.
Upcoming Events
September: Fall Combine
Please continue to share information about this newsletter and website with those you know in the community so that we can better share the wonder of our special athletes and volunteers. To sign up to receive the newsletter, go to our webform Newsletter Subscription
Area 26 Points of Contact
Area 26 Council

Elaine Tilton

Patrick DeLapp
Billy Duquette
Bruce Fingerhut
Veronica Jennings
Nancy Julia
Abby Lacy
Katherine Martin
Nancy Robbins
Paul Tierney
Bernie Woolfley
Area 26 Special Olympics |
Season Directors
Elaine Tilton, Fall/Winter

Nancy Julia, Spring/Summer

Barry Tilton

Volunteer Coordinator
Bruce Fingerhut

Medical Coordinator
Barb DeLisa

Senior Director, Potomac Region
Veronica Jennings
When you click, scroll to the bottom of the Site Homepage