Getting Active and Staying Active!
Why Is it Important for Kids to Be Active?
For kids to be healthy, both now and in the future, they need to develop good exercise habits and get involved in physical activities. Today, the Centers for Disease Control says that one out of three kids is either overweight or obese.1 That compares to only one out of 20 kids between 1976 and 1980.2 To reverse this trend, parents are finding ways to get—and keep—themselves and their kids active.
By encouraging physical activity and being supportive of your children’s activities and fitness, you can help them grow into adults that are physically fit and healthy. And by working to set a good example, you can improve your own fitness as well. Supporting and empowering kids to find physical activities that interest them and get them moving is good for more than just keeping them active—it lays the groundwork for a healthy lifestyle throughout the rest of their lives. Common Questions and Concerns About Sports and Fitness >
Did You Know?
- Only 35 percent of kids meet the recommended physical activity levels by increasing their heart rate and breathing hard for at least 60 minutes a day on five out of every seven days.3
- Fifty-four percent of kids say it’s “quite” or “very much” like them to take good care of their body by exercising regularly and eating healthy.4
- Almost 40 percent of kids say they spend three or more hours a week playing on or helping with a sports team.6 Guys are more likely to do this than girls.7
1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance—United States, 2007,” Surveillance Summaries, MMWR 57, no. SS-4 (2008).
2. National Center for Health Statistics, Health United States, 2003 with Chartbook on Trends in the Health of Americans (National Center for Health Statistics, 2003): table 69.
3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 25.
4. Ibid., 26.
5. Developmental Assets: A Profile of Your Youth, 2003 weighted aggregate dataset, unpublished report (Minneapolis, MN: Search Institute, 2005).
6. Ibid., Appendix A-8.
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Everyday Steps are the little things you can do as a parent, every day. These little steps add up to successful kids in the long run. Look for the Everyday Steps icon throughout ParentFurther, and remember: The little things you do—every day—add up!