SALEM — Bates Elementary School had a few special guests yesterday morning to offer tips on how to live with healthier eating and exercise habits.
Boston Celtics guard Rajon Rondo and forward Brandon Bass joined strength and conditioning coach Bryan Doo and team mascot Lucky in the school's Peter Doyle Gymnasium to discuss the best ways to stay fit.
Bates hosted the Celtics representatives after winning the Covidien "Fit to Win" Sweepstakes. Students from the school submitted their favorite tips for ways to stay healthy, and they were chosen from more than 400 applicants online.
"We enjoy getting up early in the morning and coming out here to support the kids and showing them that other people care and showing them what it takes to stay fit," Rondo said. "We were pretty active as young kids and want to show them that it's not all about video games."
Rondo, Bass, Doo, Lucky and Teresa Hacunda, Covidien's director of civic affairs, were introduced one by one to the crowd. Lucky did a backflip when he got in front of the Bates students, while Doo and later Rondo each cartwheeled into the gym.
After taking their places, the quintet fielded questions about their eating habits and their favorite ways to stay active.
Doo showed the students one of the playful exercises he uses with the Celtics: a modified game of tag that includes a basketball and two trash cans. He then selected four Bates School volunteers to play the game against himself, Rondo, Bass and Lucky.
"I mix it up (with the Celtics). They never know (what exercises) are coming, and, for the most part, they're all pretty good about it," Doo said. "Sometimes they look at me a little funny, but I try to take it back to when they were kids and make it fun for them."