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The Benefits Of Unstructured Play

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Shellie Pfohl is Executive Director of the President's Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition (@FitnessGov). She is responsible for developing the vision, strategy, and goals of the Council in consultation with its members, and directing the organization's daily operations. In addition, she leads the Council's efforts to support First Lady Michelle Obama's national Let's Move! (@letsmove) initiative aimed at solving the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation.

Prior to joining the Council, Shellie served as Senior Vice President of Partnerships for HOPSports, Inc. where she created strategic partnerships with state, national, and international organizations and corporations seeking health and physical education resources for schools and community organizations. Shellie also co-founded and served as Executive Director of Be Active North Carolina, a nonprofit organization that works statewide to increase physical activity among North Carolina citizens.

In this video, Pfohl talks about the long-term decline in unstructured play over the last several decades and the movement she sees in reviving unstructured play. She sees this as important, because unstructured play provides unique opportunities for socialization of youth. For example, they work out their own problems and conflicts that arise and they find themselves in positions to develop and maintain relationship in a dynamic that is different from organized sports.