NFL brings cheer and fitness advice to Bahrain
By JASON BEHNKE | STARS AND STRIPES Published: November 8, 2017
MANAMA, Bahrain — After the Washington Redskins cheerleaders performed a strenuous five-minute dance routine, squad captain Jordyn Ashley greeted a crowd of servicemembers and their families from the stage.
“I’m really excited to be back and thank you guys for what you do for our country,” she told the audience.
The squad, which dubs itself the “First Ladies of Football,” was wrapping up a 10-day tour of Southwest Asia with a visit to Naval Support Activity Bahrain on Tuesday.
The cheerleaders were joined by four former NFL players throughout the tour. Carlos Bradley, fitness expert and former player for the Philadelphia Eagles and San Diego Chargers, said the tour was intended to show support for the troops and “to let them know that health and wellness when they’re in the service and when they leave the service is very important.”
Since forming a partnership with the USO in 1966, the NFL has toured the world visiting troops. This year is the first time they’ve made fitness and nutrition a part of their show. During the tour, the players and cheerleaders led group workouts and gave nutritional advice.
“It’s the little things that we can give them,” Bradley said. “The health tips, the nutritional tips we were able to give them. If we can help them a little bit in their daily regime, that means the world to us.”
The evening show featured dance routines, pushups and dance competitions with audience members, as well as motivational speeches.
“I know it’s tough sometimes,” former Redskins player and two-time Super Bowl winner Mike Nelms told the crowd. “So if my coming here and shaking your hand brings you a little bit of daylight, it is truly an honor and privilege for me. I respect you, love you and appreciate what you do for us.”
NFL cheerleaders and former players will continue the tour of military installations throughout the year and into spring.