Jumping jack to become official Missouri exercise

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Arms up! Legs out!

The jumping jack is about to become Missouri's official state exercise.

Gov. Jay Nixon signed legislation Thursday adding the jumping jack to a list of more than two dozen official symbols and things.

The jumping jack was championed as the official state exercise by students from Pershing Elementary School in St. Joseph. They lobbied for it as a way to honor Gen. John J. Pershing.

The Missouri-born general led U.S. forces in World War I. He's credited with inventing the jumping jack as a training drill for cadets when he taught at West Point in the late 1800s.

Nixon's signature means the measure becomes state law on Aug. 28.

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