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LEXINGTON, MA (August 29, 2012) â€“ Today, a third of American children are overweight or obese, posing a serious health threat to the future of our kids. This September, in support of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, Saucony, Inc., a leading global supplier of performance athletic footwear and apparel is issuing a national challenge to runners everywhere to help reverse this trend: Download Saucony Run4Goodâ„¢, the running industry’s first-ever iPhone app dedicated to battling childhood obesity â€¦ and go run. With every mile, runners will be earning money for community youth running programs, putting kids back on the fast track to health.
An emerging triad of running, charity, and technology is the driving force behind Saucony’s powerful new app. According to Running USA’s 2012 State of the Sport, Americans are running in record numbers and the rise in charity runners is fueling a second running boom. Likewise, the survey reports that the U.S. running community is fast becoming an app nation unto itself, with running apps set to increase more than tenfold by 2016 according to market research firm ABI Research.
Recognizing the confluence of these trends, Saucony developed the GPS-enabled app, opening the door for runners everywhere to join the fight against childhood obesity without having to enter a charity race or open their wallets. Simply by running, the Saucony Run4Good app allows people to support the cause by earning donations for miles run. Each month, when a predetermined mileage goal is reached, Saucony will double its donation to selected youth running programs, inspiring individual runners to both unite over their passion for running and combat the childhood obesity epidemic. On the app’s monthly leader boards, runners can challenge friends and join teams that compete together to accumulate mileage toward the monthly goal. Starting on September 5th, the free app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or by going to saucony.com/run4good
â€œAt Saucony, our brand mission is to inspire others to runâ”€and that includes our kids,â€ said Chris Lindner, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of commerce for Saucony.
â€œThis is an extraordinary opportunity for the community to do good by doing what we loveâ”€running. As a brand focused on runners, innovation and social responsibility, we believe the Saucony Run4Good app offers a new world of possibilities to engage with our community in a relevant, innovative and meaningful way while inspiring a strong unity of purpose to make a difference for our kids.â€
â€œDelivering the first app in the running industry that address childhood obesity underlines our continued commitment to this issue,â€ said Richie Woodworth, president of the Saucony Run For Good Foundation Board of Directors and Saucony, Inc. â€œWe started the Saucony Run For Good Foundation seven years ago to help in the national effort to eradicate this epidemic. Since that time, we’ve awarded nearly $1 million in grants to over 100 organizations nationwide, all dedicated to getting more kids active. The Saucony Run4Good app is an impactful way for more people to connect as a community and take action.â€
Five non-profit organizations were recently awarded a grant from the Saucony Run For Good Foundationâ„¢. For the next five months, beginning in September, a community mileage challenge will be set, and one of the recent award winners will be profiled. If the community mileage goal is reached during that month, Saucony will double its contribution to the featured organization.
The American Diabetes AssociationÂ® New England Division is the highlighted organization for the September launch of the Saucony Run4Good app. ADA New England is launching Run For Your Life!, a clinical weight loss program for overweight and obese youth in the Greater Boston area. The ADA’s program will use running as the foundation of physical activity to facilitate significant lifestyle changes in the program’s participants.
The complete list of the Saucony Run For Good Foundation grant winners to be featured on the Saucony Run4Good app in the coming months is as follows:
â€¢American Diabetes AssociationÂ® New England, Boston, Massachusetts
â€¢Eric Thomas Foundation, Houston, Texas
â€¢Mount Desert Island YMCAÂ®, Bar Harbor, Maine
â€¢Marathon High, Austin, Texas
â€¢United WayÂ® of Northeast Florida, Jacksonville, Florida
In the future, Saucony plans to invite the community to nominate and select future Run For Good grant winners. The brand also welcomes like-minded organizations and corporations to gain access to the Saucony Run4Good app, allowing their employees to join Saucony in the fight against childhood obesity.
For more information on how the Saucony Run For Good Foundationâ„¢ can help local youth communities nationwide, visit www.sauconyrunforgood.com.
About Saucony, Inc.: Saucony, Inc., a subsidiary of Collective Brands, Inc., is a leading global running lifestyle brand that fuses performance, innovation and style to create compelling footwear and apparel with its widely recognized brands Saucony and Saucony Originals. Founded in 1898, Saucony continues to inspire runners everywhere with its award winning innovations, including the â€œGeometry of Strongâ„¢, ProGridâ„¢, PowerGridâ„¢ ViZiPROâ„¢ and AMP PRO2â„¢ apparel. At Saucony, a good day is when we get to run. A great day is when we inspire someone else to run. For more information, go to www.saucony.com.
About the Saucony Run For Good Foundationâ„¢: The Saucony Run For Good Foundation is committed to improving the lives of children by helping to prevent and reduce childhood obesity. The Foundation acts to inform the public about its cause and prevention and provides funding to optimize the impact and success of community organizations that promote running and healthy lifestyle programs for youth. Since the Foundation launched in 2006, it has awarded nearly one million dollars in grants to over 100 organizations nationwide. For more information, visit www.sauconyrunforgood.com.
About the Saucony Run4Goodâ„¢ App: The Saucony Run4Good app is a powerful, personal app that opens the door for runners everywhere to join the fight against childhood obesity by doing what they love-running. When a predetermined mileage goal is reached, Saucony will double its donation to selected youth running programs featured monthly, inspiring individual runners to both unite over their passion for running and combat the childhood obesity epidemic. The free app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or by going to saucony.com/run4good.
About National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month: National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month (September), which began as a Presidential Proclamation in 2010, recognizes the serious threat that obesity poses to the health of America’s children and calls on national, state and local leaders, communities and individuals to build awareness and take action to decrease its prevalence in the United States.