Children are more sedentary than ever, watching television and playing video games instead of biking to the playground or playing kickball in the backyard with their pals is a major cause. And even schools have stopped emphasizing fitness, in some school districts, physical education has vanished completely because of under-funding.
Kids need regular exercise to build strong bones and muscles. Exercise also helps children sleep well at night and stay alert during the day. Such habits established in childhood help adolescents maintain healthy weight despite the hormonal changes, rapid growth and social influences that often lead to overeating. And active children are more likely to become fit adults.
As childhood has become more sedentary, children have put on weight lots of it. In the past 30 years, the rate of childhood obesity has more than tripled, leading to a dramatic increase in the number of children with type 2 diabetes, a disease once limited to sedentary, overweight adults.
You do have the power to give your children a lifelong appreciation for activities that strengthen their bodies.
Follow these tips to keep your kid active: