Donna Moore jump roped her way through degrees at Pima Community College and Arizona State University because she preferred to stay out of the gym.
"Jump roping has always been a part of my life. It is great cardiovascular exercise," she said.
When she began teaching physical education, trick jump roping was part of the curriculum she offered students.
The American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance will honor Moore, as one of two 2008 Jump Rope for Heart Outstanding Coordinators of the Year.
The American Heart Association co-sponsors the jumping program in elementary schools. Children learn about the value of exercise and healthy lives while raising millions of dollars for research and education to fight heart disease and stroke.
As the Arizona coordinator for the program since 2004, Moore is in charge of disseminating information to school coordinators, making sure they are thanked for their efforts at state luncheons, and organizing convention sessions. Moore has also served as the coordinator for the Southwest District (HI., Ariz., N.M, Utah, and Nev.).
"Donna is a consummate professional and has made the Arizona and Southwest District Jump Rope for Heart and Hoops for Heart programs the success it has become," said Caroline Taylor, joint projects program manager for AAHPERD.
Weekdays, Moore shares her enthusiasm and love for sports with the students at Julia Randall Elementary School as the physical education teacher.
Moore's philosophy is simple: She tries to incorporate innovative activities so children develop a love of movement.
Juggling, yoga, walking the campus trail and exercising with stability balls are just a few of the ways she encourages students to work their muscles, heart and lungs.
"And dancing, we are big on dancing at JRE," Moore said.