Sport and physical fitness have as natural a partnership as bread and butter. While both have much to be said for themselves separately, they are even better together; and I'm sure that's the way everyone wants to see them.
Although sport in America has now come into an era of unprecedented popularity and participation, physical fitness, especially among our youth, has not made similar forward progress. This is a matter for obvious concern, as leaders on all levels have recognized. Most notably and on the highest level, President Eisenhower himself two years ago established the Council on Youth Fitness.
Periodically SPORTS ILLUSTRATED has reported on the status of physical fitness throughout the country and the prospects for more of it. It has not yet been possible to break into thunderous applause, for what remains to be accomplished far outweighs what has been achieved. But there have been some conscientious and constructive efforts toward increasing the awareness of the significance of fitness and toward increasing the opportunities for our youth to develop it.
Among these is the Youth Fitness Program of the Junior Chamber of Commerce of which SPORTS ILLUSTRATED is proud to be a co-sponsor (SI, July 7). Part of the Jaycees' national program is a competition among individual chapters for the best programs designed to further physical fitness within their local communities. This week it is a pleasure for me to announce this year's winners in the five different population categories into which the competition falls. Among cities of 300,000 and over, it was the Minneapolis chapter, and in descending order of size, Springfield, Ill., Zanesville, Ohio, Sidney, Ohio, and Hagerstown, Ind.
All the programs are grounded in such classical sports activities as track, swimming, tennis and baseball—and derive their solidity from such essential and by no means sporting activities as publicity and the preparation of financial reports.
One thing the Jaycees know. It takes work to spread the butter on the bread. But they are setting a fine example in showing some of the best ways to do it. For that SPORTS ILLUSTRATED congratulates them heartily and to each of the winning chapters, in permanent admiration, is happy to present the silver Revere bowl you see here.