Let's Get Moving!

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When it comes to physical activity, every little bit counts! LET'S GET MOVING month is designed to get you and your child to become more physically active. Children are less physically fit than they were a generation ago. In fact, inactive children, when compared to active children, weigh more and have higher blood pressure. Most importantly, inactive children are more likely to become inactive adults.

Many parents think of organized sports like soccer or baseball when they think of getting exercise. Unfortunately, practice and games once or twice a week are not enough activity to reach the recommended goal of at least 60 minutes everyday. As parents, we also can't rely on physical education in schools to provide enough activity for our children. The good news is that there are many ways that we can keep our children active everyday!

The current recommendation for children is to have at least 60 minutes of physical activity on most, preferably all days of the week. Activity can be accumulated throughout the day. Even blocks of time as short as 15 minutes or more can be accumulated throughout the day to achieve this goal. This sixty minute recommendation can be accomplished very easily by including activity into your daily routine. For example, try taking the stairs instead of an elevator or parking further away and walking to the store. Don't forget activities like raking leaves, shoveling snow or having your child clean his or her room.

Why is physical activity important for my child?

It helps to maintain a healthy body weight

It improves your child's physical skills like jumping, throwing, kicking and catching

It strengthens your child's muscles and improves coordination

It can increase your child's life expectancy

It can reduce the risk of some cancers and diabetes