Sports Backers Blog

Column: Sports Backers is expanding to create a healthier RVA

(The following is an excerpt from an Op-ed written by Jon Lugbill that appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch on April 15, 2023)


If you’re active in the Richmond region’s parks, trails and athletic facilities, you may have noticed that more and more people are joining you. It’s not your imagination: The number of people living actively in our region has steadily climbed over the past 20 years. We are one of the most active regions in the country. This means a growing number of our active friends, neighbors, classmates and co-workers are more productive, have lower health care costs and contribute to increased community vibrancy. While the surge in active living is encouraging, there is more to do when it comes to helping everyone find a form of movement that will enable them to reap the rewards that active living provides.


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. Being physically active can improve your brain health, help manage weight, reduce the risk of disease, strengthen bones and muscles, and improve your ability to do everyday activities.”


We at Sports Backers want to provide access to active living, making it a way of life that is safe, accessible and fun for everyone. In fact, we care so much about creating a region where active living opportunities abound that we recently revised our strategic goals to meet our community’s future needs. Sports Backers is leading the planning and advocacy for the Fall Line, a 43-mile multi-use trail from Ashland to Petersburg, and we look forward to its completion in the next five years. During that same time frame, we will be advocating for 140 more miles of sidewalks, bike lanes and trails, continuing to build a connected network of active transportation and recreation options. Further, we will be working with several partners across sectors to build an Outdoor Adventure Sports Center.


Read the full article here



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