According to a recent survey, about three out of four children fail to get at least one hour of physical activity a day. It shows that nearly 75 percent of American children between the ages of five and ten do not get the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity every day. Just as alarming is the survey showed only 15 percent of parents think overall physical health is a top concern for their children. They have little concern about the physical state of their children even though childhood obesity rates are skyrocketing. Here are a few other key points the survey found:
- Nearly 40 percent of parents feel as though extracurricular activities are too expensive and that there simply isn’t enough time in the day to achieve a healthy lifestyle for their children. Many of these parents are cutting back on extracurricular activities for their kids as a way to save money.
- Over half of the parents surveyed say they spend time playing video games with their kids or spend time with them on computer activities.
- Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed said their children spend fewer than four days week doing outdoor activities.
- Over 40 percent of parents agree that technological devices and technologies, including video games, smartphones and social media, are to blame for a lack of physical activity.
- Just over 90 percent of parents surveyed say they provide a healthy home environment for their children, yet 40 percent don’t get the exercise they need.
- Half the children between the ages of five and ten watch at least two hours of television a day.
The prevalence of obesity in children has more than tripled since the early 1970s. In fact, childhood obesity is now the number one health concern among parents, topping even smoking and drug abuse. But there are ways in which you can prevent childhood obesity, and it starts at home.
Lead By Example
If your children see you eating healthy, limiting your television time and being active, they are more likely to get on a healthier track and make better choices. Tell your children about the healthy foods you eat and don’t be afraid to cook in front of them. Take them with you when you go to the gym for active gaming, there are plenty of cool exercises, like the Eyeplay Floor Game, TWall and Everlast Climbing Wall, that they are sure to enjoy.
Make Healthy Food Choices
You may need to make major changes in your family’s eating habits, but start small and take gradual steps. For example, instead of serving french fries with the burgers you made, try a salad or a vegetable instead.
Get Your Children Moving
It used to be quite common to see children playing outside, riding their bikes in the neighborhood and shooting baskets at the playground. Perhaps it’s time to bring back the good old days. In addition to active gaming, take your kids outside for a game of hide-and-seek or just play catch with them for a half and hour. You could even do chores together.
Every little bit helps.