Let's Go!
Children and adults play a game with balls in a gym

Bright Bodies

Bright Bodies is a 12-week program affiliated with Let’s Go! that uses the Smart Moves™ curriculum which has been shown in studies to improve health. It is a healthy lifestyle and family approach for children ages 6-17 who have extra weight or obesity. Children and their families will learn about food intake and activity levels, while gathering concrete skills to promote healthier behaviors and lifestyles along with building self-esteem, confidence and strengthening family dynamics.

Why Bright Bodies?

Bright Bodies was developed at Yale Medical Center. Research has shown that intensive lifestyle programs like Bright Bodies can positively affect health outcomes, including lowering BMI, decreasing risk of developing diabetes and impacting positive change in self-esteem. 

American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all children 6 and older who have extra weight or obesity should be offered intensive lifestyle programs. Bright Bodies supports MaineHealth’s vision of working together so our communities the healthiest in America.

Who qualifies for the program?

Children must meet the following requirements: 

  • Ages 6-17 years old
  • Have extra weight or obesity, as measured by BMI over 85th percentile (Bright Bodies team can help determine this for parents)
  • Have a parent/caregiver available to attend sessions

How do I get get started?

  • Patients may refer a child by calling 207-670-8378 or emailing brightbodies@mainehealth.org  
  • Providers may refer through EPIC - Ambulatory referral to Intensive Health Behavior and Lifestyle Therapy, REF 10041 AMB
kids play a game in a gym
A Bright Bodies instructor uses a large note pad to teach
a young girl pedaling on a mounted bike

Program Overview

Bright Bodies is offered by MaineHealth and Let’s Go! in Portland and Norway, Maine. 

South Portland

MaineHealth Weight Management South Portland
41 Donald B Dean Drive, Suite A
South Portland, ME 04106


Ripley Medical Office Building
193 Main Street
Norway, Maine 04268

Exact days and times will be shared with participants but session timing is: 

  • Summer 2024 
  • Fall 2024 
  • Winter 2025 
  • Spring 2025 
  • Summer 2025
A bowl of healthy fruit

Smart Moves™ consists of four key components: 

Nutrition Education - The program teaches better food choices and appropriate portion sizes for best long-term results. Dieting is not recommended since it encourages short-term changes and does not generally lead to permanent success. Health training specialists teach all nutrition-related topics (40-minute class). Parents and caregivers are encouraged to join all nutrition-related classes since they do the grocery shopping and cooking and are a role model for the family.

Behavior Modifications - Children will become more aware of overeating triggers and ultimately learn ways to cope with such triggers. The program carefully works on maintaining or developing a positive self-concept. Health training specialists facilitate this portion of the program (40-minute class) and use the Smart Moves™ Workbook as a reference. Parents and caregivers are discouraged from attending these class topics since the children partake in more frank discussions without a parental figure present.

Physical Activity - In addition to improving eating behaviors, the program’s goal is to increase children’s physical activity level. Activity promotes weight loss and, later, helps maintain weight. Children are encouraged to exercise 30 to 40 minutes five times per week. The program offers two, 50-minute, moderate, cardiovascular workouts each week of the program. Health training specialists supervise the exercise component. The Bright Bodies Program uses active games to offer an array of activity choices for children.

Parent/Caregiver Classes - Parents/caregivers will learn how to be role models by promoting healthy behavior changes in the family environment. This component takes a solution-focused approach and encourages caregivers to be mindful of the whole child, and to increase the identification of the positive characteristics of the child. These classes provide support for parents/caregivers and an opportunity to discuss challenges and celebrate successes with other parents/caregivers. 

Bright Bodies is currently being offered by MaineHealth and Let’s Go! at no cost to families who qualify for the program.

4 kids stand with their parents in a gym

A parent or caregiver must attend two in-person classes with their child each week for 12 weeks. A virtual option may be offered as well.

Currently, we are able to deliver the program in English only.

Bright Bodies: A Healthy Lifestyle Program for Children

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