Toy Manufacturers respond to First Lady's Let's Move initiative to combat childhood obesity
(SAN FRANCISCO, February 8, 2011) - The 108th American International Toy Fair takes place in New York City one year after First Lady Michelle Obama launched Let's Move, an initiative to solve the challenge of childhood obesity within a generation. One of the four pillars of the First Lady's Let's Move campaign is increasing physical activity. Toy manufacturers are responding to the program by creating more products that encourage physical activity among children. Many of these new active play products will debut during Toy Fair at the Javits Center February 13-16, 2011.
Wild Planet Entertainment, Inc., whose 2007 Hyper Dash game is credited with bringing physical activity back to the forefront of the toy industry, continues to expand the options for physical fun in the toy aisle. The company is releasing an unprecedented number of products that focus on keeping kids moving. Sixty-seven percent of Wild Planet's new toys for 2011 will be movement-based.
"We recognize that good health greatly contributes to a child's happiness," says Daniel Grossman, CEO of Wild Planet. "We have seen how play can be a major component of a healthy lifestyle."
To draw more attention to the importance of increased physical activity, Wild Planet designed the packaging for its new Hyper Games products to include messaging that aligns with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Ad Council and the Let's Move campaign. Sharing the sentiment that an hour of active play each day leads to a healthier body and mind, Wild Planet's Hyper Games feature icons that depict the type of active play each game offers, such as "Healthy Heart" or "Strong Body."
Wild Planet is showcasing three new Hyper Games at Toy Fair - Speed Slider, Freeze Ball and Balance Bender. The company equates playing a single 15-minute Hyper Game with getting 25 percent of one's daily activity needs.
In addition to expanding the popular Hyper Games brand, Wild Planet created a new line of high-energy products for tween boys. The new Torx brand will launch with five different games, including Whipslammer, a cross between dodge ball and tether ball that can be played indoors.
"The focus of our Hyper Games and Torx brands is first and foremost fun," explains Grossman. "We're not making exercise equipment for kids. We see value in incorporating physical activity into games. Being active is fun, and increased health benefits come from that fun. "
All of Wild Planet's new active play products will be on display at Toy Fair in Booth #2853. The new toys will become available to the public between June and September, 2011, and will retail for $25 or less.