With childhood obesity on the rise and physical education classes being cut, many kids are not living healthy, active lives. One local school’s coach is trying to change that by sharing his personal story. 7’s Lynn Martinez shows us in today’s Parent to Parent.

WSVN — Jacob Kotlicky knows what it’s like to be the overweight kid.

Jacob Kotlicky: “By my Barmitzvah, I was somewhere between 220 and 230 [pounds].”

By age 21, at 260 pounds, he got a sobering warning.

Jacob Kotlicky: “The doctor said to me if you don’t change the way you’re living you’re going to have a heart attack by 25.”

That was the push he needed to turn his life around.

Jacob Kotlicky: “It was about developing a more active lifestyle and a healthier approach to life, not just about restricting calories and simply exercising.”

Jacob decided to dedicate his life to health and wellness and teaching children what he’s learned.

He became the head athletic trainer at Scheck Hillel Community School in North Miami Beach, where he encourages all kids to get up and move.

Jacob Kotlicky: “That’s one of the worst things for so many kids, there’s no playtime there’s no regular physical activity.”

He wants young people to understand being fit isn’t about being the skinniest or having the biggest muscles.

Jacob Kotlicky: “Really get them to understand it’s not how you look, it’s how you live.”

Known to many here as “Coach K,” he guides student athletes, when it comes to competing.

Jacob Kotlicky: “The best brace to work for what you want.”

Natan, a senior who plays varsity football and basketball, says the students really listen to coach k.

Natan Sredni: “We know that what he tells us is important to us and he knows, because he’s been through it.”

The staff here also realizes the importance of physical education and says Coach K is a great role model, because he overcame his own struggles with weight and kids can relate to that.

Monica Wagenberg: “He exemplifies hard work, perseverance and just really taking care of yourself.”

He even keeps a picture of himself at his heaviest on his cell phone and shares it with students.

He wants them to know if he can lose the weight and live a healthy lifestyle, anyone can.

Jacob Kotlicky: “The habits they learn as children, now they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.”

The school is in the process of building a brand new athletic facility to expand their sports and fitness program.

Scheck Hillel Community School
Tel: (305) 931-2831

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