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Under the new initiative, modest grants will be available from the Education Department to help some programs get started. The GENYOUth Foundation and ChildObesity180 also will be awarding grants.

Nike has committed $50 million to the effort over the next five years; the remaining groups together have pledged more than $20 million.

Williams said it’s important to structure the activity so that it doesn’t feel like a workout.

“I had fun and I didn’t realize it was work,” she said about her years of practice before becoming one of America’s top tennis players.



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