2021 marked the FIRST-EVER Buddy Up for Life National Games! In celebration of World Down Syndrome Day, we celebrated our Athletes by enabling them to showcase all the amazing things they can do and all that they strive for. The Games targeted the fitness goals that our Buddies and Athletes had been working diligently on together through the Buddy Up Connections Program. 

Before the National Games, Athletes submitted qualifier videos for three of the events, including push-ups, burpees, and racquet ups. The Athletes were bursting with excitement, and the pre-qualifier competition rallied and energized everyone in readiness for the upcoming event. Check out the qualifier video mashup on our social media platforms!

By the time March 20th had arrived, everyone was ready to go for GOLD! With over 85+ participants from across the nation, our Buddy Up for Life family was united to show off their skills like never before! The Buddy Up for Life National Games was a completely virtual event, similar to our Buddy Up Jump this past Fall. Buddies and Athletes were eager and able to reach new personal BESTS! There were 10 events to compete in, and the energy and excitement could be felt in each of our communities.

We kicked off the National Games by passing the torch across the nation. Following the torch pass, our Athletes warmed up with a crowd favorite, Zumba with Miss Kimberly, before we moved straight into the 10 competitive fitness events led by Coach Kyle, Coach Doug, and Coach Amanda. Our Buddies and Athletes showcased their accomplishments via challenging events such as leg lift holds, planks, ball juggles, hula hoops, jump ropes, push-ups, burpees, and racquet ups. They were determined to win the gold, and had so much fun demonstrating what they could do.

We are immensely grateful for how the Buddy Up for Life National Games brought everyone together, this year. We were able to experience the invaluable support of our wonderful sponsors, see the smiles on our Buddies’ and Athletes’ faces as they crushed their goals, and view the excitement that filled the virtual ‘room’. Through the support of sponsors and the Buddy Up for Life community, we raised $40,000 to support our Athletes, nationwide! Our Buddy Up for Life community is stronger than ever, and we have so much more energy to bring in 2021.

Thank you to everyone involved, and a HUGE shoutout to our lead sponsors: Kokosing; A Matter of Conscience; Nationwide Children’s Hospital; Kegler Brown Hill & Ritter; Remax Town Center, and Revel. We hope to see you at the next Buddy Up for Life event!