Website: Children's Harnesses by Elaine, Inc. www.childharness.ca
and my other blogs about weight loss: Weight Loss Made Simple
and parenting my 2 boys: My Boys Can...

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Kids and Physical Activity. They should meet more often.

Yesterday there was yet another report from Stats Canada about the inactive youth in our country and I must say the numbers were more shocking than I had imagined. 

Of kids aged 6 to 19 years, only 7% were "active enough to make health gains".

For children and youth, 8.6 hours (62%) of their waking hours were spent being sedentary and this increased to 9+ hours for children aged 15 to 19 years. The percentages of obesity among young boys and girls aged 6 to 10 was also disturbing; 8% and 5% respectively.

Why has physical activity essentially disappeared from the lives of our children? What can we do to get it back? As a parent, what examples are you setting for your kids? Could you lose a few pounds yourself? According to the report, chances are you could.  

Oh come on, don't shoot the messenger.

Adding small doses of physical activity to your day can be as simple as walking to the end of the street with your kids after dinner. Ask how their day was. Ask questions so they tell you more. It's amazing how much happens in their worlds and when given the chance, they'll tell you everything. Soon that walk to the end of the street will turn into walks around the block.

What about bike riding? Do the kids have bikes? If they are riding and you are walking, you'll be able to stay out longer and walk further while the kids ride ahead.

Walk your kids to school if you can. Bizarre idea? What's bizarre to me is seeing the long line of cars at the front of the school every morning to drop the child right at the door. Can you park a few blocks away and walk at least that distance to school? Once a week maybe? For your kid's sake? 

TV, video games, computer time, there are lots of convenient excuses and pleasant distractions to keep all of us sitting around at home. But speaking from experience, there are lots of equally pleasant distractions outdoors too that are worth exploring at least a few times a week.

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