Why Keeping Kids Active Needs to be a Parenting Priority

Photo by Flickr user King of Kensington
Photo by Flickr user King of Kensington

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that kids have at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. Unfortunately, only about 35% of school-aged children are getting the recommended activity.

With fitness programs being cut from schools across the country, the responsibility falls on parents to make sure their children live an active lifestyle.

Here’s a few reasons why you need to make sure to keep kids active:

Disease Prevention

Just an hour a day of play helps keep disease away! Regular activity helps build healthy bones and muscles–a strong foundation for a growing body.

Just the recommended minimum amount of physical activity significantly reduces a child’s risk of obesity, type-2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer.

Better Academic Performance

Kids that are more physically fit have been found to perform better in school.

Studies show that through its positive effects on alertness and mental health, such as increases in self–esteem and reductions in anxiety and stress, physical activity may actually increase a child’s capacity to learn.

Positive Social Impact

Physical activity has been shown to help develop character and self esteem, and also helps reduce the rate of juvenile delinquency. The more kids are actively engaged, the less time they’ll have to get into trouble.

Group sports are a great way to build a sense of community and belonging among children. It can help build diverse friendships outside of school that could last a lifetime.

More Control over Symptoms of Common Disorders

Regular activity can help control symptoms of asthma and ADHD. Kids with ADHD can better drown out distractions and focus on a task after physical activity. Active kids also tend to sleep better–an added bonus for both kids and exhausted parents!

Keeping kids active can be as simple as playing in the backyard or in the park, or make a commitment by signing up for scheduled classes and camps. This being summer season, there are summer camps abound where kids can both learn a new skill as well as keep fit. Find great local camps & classes near you on ActivityHero.

Written by Sarah Lynn