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Creating a project for the National Fitness Foundation Innovation Challenge

Update as of 1/8/18: Funding for the match offer portion of this opportunity was fully applied to eligible projects on 1/5/18 and is no longer available.


The National Fitness Foundation is committed to preparing children for a lifetime of health and fitness. At the heart of this commitment is lifting up the transformative and creative work of physical educators. Starting October 31st, the National Fitness Foundation invites you to submit an innovative gym and fitness project for the chance to receive matched donations and win a $10,000 DonorsChoose.org gift card.

As part of this Innovation Challenge, the National Fitness Foundation will match donations to qualifying gym and fitness projects that get students active, Projects submitted before the end of the year will be considered for one of three gift card prizes: $10,000 for the first place project, $7,000 for the second place project, and $5,000 for the third place project. To win a gift card, your project must be deemed as one of the three most innovative ideas based on the rubric below. Judging will begin in early 2018.

Here’s how to qualify:

  • Create a project that gives your students the opportunity to get moving, active, and fit!
  • Your project must request sports or fitness equipment. Furniture, books, instruments, food, or other classroom resources will not qualify.
  • Keep your total project goal under $800, including taxes, shipping, and the suggested donation to support DonorsChoose.org.
  • Select “Gym & Fitness” as your subject area.
  • Extra rubric points will be provided to schools who participate in the Presidential Youth Fitness Program.


If your project meets the criteria above, you should see the match offer applied to your project as soon as it’s approved and live on the site (however, it won’t appear during Friends and Family Pre-funding). New donations will be matched one-to-one as long as funding remains.

Judging rubric:


Need inspiration?  Here are some of our favorite gym and fitness projects:

Thank you to our PE Innovation Challenge Judges from Alliance for a Healthier Generation, American Heart Association, Nike, and Target.