Children hone their athletic edge after school

Children hone their athletic edge after school
By Chelsey Pletts
MIDDLETON – It was difficult
to distinguish one whizzing
green jersey from another as
the students at Howe-Manning
raced through an obstacle
course yesterday.
The after-school program,
Athletic Kids, created by certified personal trainer, nutritionist and sports enhancement
specialist Peter “Rep” Reppas,
puts students’ agility to the test.
“We want kids that want
to work to get better at their
sport,” Reppas said. “If we teach
how to do something correctly
now, we don’t have to fix bad
habits later.”
Twenty-seven students, ages
6 through 12, bounced through
an obstacle course that included
speed ladders, reaction balls
and plyometric stations, which
are used to create fast, powerful movements while improving the nervous system. The
students cheered each other on
as peers waited eagerly for their
“It’s really fun,” said Daniel
Gregorio, a fifth-grader in the
program. “It helps with your
Reppas, founder of Repertoire Fitness Inc. in Beverly,
began training athletes in 2000.
He traveled around the country,
often living with his athletes to
gain control over their eating
and exercise regimens. Working with professional athletes,
such as Randy Moss of the New
England Patriots and Luol Deng
of the Chicago Bulls, Reppas
trains clients using his program
that enforces “head-to-toe
training” combining nutrition
and physical activity.
Jodi Sampson said her son,
Michael, has become more
focused since participating in
MARK LORENZ/Staff Photos
Peter Reppas encourages Renaldo Musto, 11, during workouts at Howe Manning Elementary School’s six-week
after-school program called Athletic Kids.
the six-week program. “You can
really see the kids gain a great
sense of pride when they leave,”
Sampson said. The program
began on Feb. 26 and runs until
March 31 and costs $72 for the
six weeks. The group meets
every Tuesday for an hour after
“In order to get an edge, we
have to start them off earlier in
their life,” Reppas said. “I had a
kid with me since third grade;
now he’s a freshman and will go
to college for free.”
Two athletes, Ben Bellucci
and Vinnie Scalia, who have
trained with Reppas for at least
seven years, encourage the
students and help them with
the exercises.
“The younger you meet Rep,
the better,” said Scolia, who
began training with Reppas as a
Ten-year-old Kiley Lombardi
Daniel Gregorio uses a basketball as part of the class.
is the only girl in the group,
but, Reppas said, she can hold
her own.
“I really like to race,” Kiley
said, distracted, as she waited
for her turn to charge through
the course.
This program, Reppas said,
provides a steppingstone for
the novice athlete “to become
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