A national fencing program is making it's West Coast debut in eastern Idaho.
Rigby Middle School is starting up its Fencing in the Schools program. It's a national organization led by Olympic medalists who aim to get kids fencing all over the nation. The school got a grant called Fuel up to Play 60, which pays for part of the program. The goal is get kids active 60 minutes a day, as well as give them guidance in healthy food options.
The Olympians were at the school to kick off the program earlier in the week. They demonstrated their skills and talked to the kids about the sport. Vice Principal Dave Meyer wanted to give students a new option for staying active. As a fencer himself, Meyer thought this would be a perfect program for the school.
Fencing will serve as a capstone physical education class for eighth-graders. If students really enjoy the sport, Meyer hopes to start an after-school program. He let a few students try out the new equipment, and they say they can't wait to get started.
"I'm excited because it's just something different we have never had in our school before," said Sydney, and eighth-grader at RMS.
"It's going to be really fun, something different and new I have never tried before," added another student, Sidnee.
"It doesn't require a lot of strength, it requires more dexterity and the ability to think quickly, the ability to think strategically, so there is a mental, as well as a physical aspect to it," said Meyer.
The representatives from Fencing in the Schools stopped by a few schools in Pocatello that are also considering adding the program.