Fonda organizes 1st World Fitness Day event

A veritable Who’s Who of the physical fitness world will convene in Atlanta to conduct one of the largest group workouts ever.

Atlanta’s Georgia Dome will house the first World Fitness Day on May 1. The event is being hosted by Jane Fonda. The purpose of the event is to make self-empowerment, health and wellness more of a lifelong priority in people’s lives.

“We are trying to do something that is quite spectacular,” Fonda, an Atlanta resident, told the AJC on Saturday. “Here is an opportunity for thousands of people to participate and take charge of their bodies.”

For an hour, participants will be led in exercise sessions depending on their level of fitness. The sessions will be led by Richard Simmons, Billy Blanks, Denise Austin and Fonda. The Pointer Sisters will perform some of their greatest hits. Other notable celebrities include California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who will deliver a video tribute, and Dr. Sanjay Gupta, who will kick off the session.

“I felt it was important that there be different sessions for the different levels. That way everyone, young and old, can participate,” Fonda said via phone, adding that she is leading a session to show baby boomers and seniors that it is never too late for them to get fit.

“I am 72 years old with a replaced hip and knee,” she said. “I want people to be able to see me so that it may encourage them.”

Three months ago, Fonda got the idea for World Fitness Day. She said she wanted to do something that would inspire people, and that was affordable and life-changing. She chose May because it is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month.

Georgia is the third-highest state in obesity and overweight children between the ages of 10 and 17, according to Fonda.

The goal is to have at least 3,000 participants inside the Dome this year, and participants in other cities and countries through a live stream on UStream.tv. Individuals can participate by paying the $75 registration fee, or groups can register at a discounted rate.

“People can be responsible for their own health by just getting up and moving,” Fonda said. “My hope is that people will realize, ‘Oh, I can do this,’ which will then result in groups of people planning their own workouts once a week or just walking.”

To register or for more information, click here.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention (GCAPP), which Fonda founded in 1995.