Gym fights teen obesity with free memberships

RALEIGH The goal is to help combat youth obesity.

Former NC State and NFL player Bobby Houston says summer break has taken on a whole new meaning for teens.

"When I was coming up, it was a good thing to be outside and exercising," Houston explained.

These days video games, television and technology are keeping more and more children indoors and inactive.

Doctors say childhood obesity is on the rise and to blame for serious health problems.

That's why Lifestyle Family Fitness is offering its best deal yet to teens between the ages of 12 and 17.

"We decided to open up our doors to teenagers for free during the summer," Houston said.

For two months, teens can take advantage of a free membership, which is a savings of more than $60.

"We have the weight lifting and treadmills, and we have the wide variety of fitness classes," Houston said. "The goal to me is to plant a seed and to have that seed permeate throughout the family.".

You don't have to be a body builder to workout at Lifestyle Family Fitness.

"The most difficult part honestly is walking through the door," Houston said. "Once you're here, it's a lot of fun. It's not intimidating. You have the music, the classes [and] the personal trainers.

Last year 6.500 teens took part in the deal at the company's 55 locations nationwide. This year, owners hope 10,000 will participate.

"We're hoping it grows every year because in this way we think it can affect an entire community," Houston said.

Click her for more information about the program and to locate a Lifestyle Family Fitness near you.

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