With the heat settling in here in Mount Pleasant and Charleston, it’s easy to give in to the urge to lay low, stay indoors and veg out. This is also true for our kids. Without school to keep them busy and school sports on hiatus, lots of kids turn into couch potatoes. While it’s totally great (and important) to decompress after a hard school year, it’s super-important to keep up with your kids’ fitness, even in these hot summer months.
According to CNN, “…Increasing sedentary time at home represent a significant threat to our children’s health and wellness…the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that obesity rates having tripled for children and quadrupled for adolescents during the last 30 years.” Yikes!
And technology is partially to blame. Dr. Angela Falls of Florida Hospital explains, “I know that when it comes to childhood obesity, too much screen time may add to unhealthy habits that can last a lifetime. In general, kids today prefer spending hours watching TV or playing with their tablet computer instead of heading outdoors to a park or getting active with friends.” And with scorching temps outside, it’s even more tempting to say in the air conditions. The article continues, “According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), children and adolescents should spend a maximum of 1-2 hours of ‘screen time’ per a day. AAP has estimated that the average child can spend upwards of 7 hours of TV, internet usage and video games per day! The scary thought is that everything else is taking a back seat including: quality family time, reading, homework, and exercise.”
KIDS NEED TO BE ACTIVE
But it’s important for kids to put down their iPads and get active. According to LiveStrong, “Children need exercise just as much as adults, so it’s appropriate for them to go to the gym from about the age of 2 onward. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, recommends children get at least one hour of exercise every day. Benefits of regular exercise for children include controlling stress, raising self-esteem, maintaining a healthy weight, building a healthy body and improved sleep.”
While clearly activities will vary based on age, the article continues to explain that by grade school, kids are ready for organized activities like the ones we have here at DUFF: “The type of activity a child does at the gym depends on his age and physical maturity. An elementary school child starts to make more of [their] own decisions about how [s/he] wants to exercise. [S/he] may enjoy more organized gym sports meeting up to three times a week. [They’re] ready to have gym classes extend beyond the basics during these years to help her develop [their] own style. [His/her] gym activities can include yoga, rock climbing and more advanced gymnastic classes, as well as group activities such as softball, baseball, basketball, soccer, horseback riding and swimming.”
EXERCISING EARLY HAS LIFE LONG IMPACTS
It turns out that getting your kids involved in physical activities really pays off. Kids Health explains, “Kids who enjoy sports and exercise tend to stay active throughout their lives. And staying fit can improve self-esteem, prevent obesity, and decrease the risk of serious illnesses such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease later in life.”
And beyond physical wellness, a healthy lifestyle routine carries beyond the gym. AHealthierMichigan.org emphasizes that “Taking your child to the gym can teach them the benefits of hard work and dedication. These traits are essential in athletics as well as school…Kids can learn how to set goals for themselves and work toward achieving them. The goals can be as simple as completing five push-ups or jogging one mile. You may want to set goals that you can work on achieving together. Setting and completing fitness goals can teach kids that with patience and dedication, anything is possible!”
JOIN US AT DUFF
So how can you get your kids to embrace being active? Have them try our Kids DUFF classes! Aimed at boys and girls ages 7-12 years old, we incorporate sports influenced exercises such as jumping, hand-eye-coordination, and agility work as well as bodyweight movements and some strength type exercises without using external weights. It’s all very age appropriate and fun! Our trainers work hard to get kids excited about fitness at every level. Participants range from first-time-gym goers to competitive athletes and everybody has a BLAST!
A great way to try out Kids DUFF is to enroll in our DUFF Camp: two hours of fun-filled activities like obstacle courses, team challenges, climbing ropes, cargo net fun, monkey bar madness, plyometric movements, jump ropes, rowing and more!
For more information on Kids DUFF click HERE.
Our Summer Camp Schedule is
July 17th-July 21nd,
1:00 – 3:00
For more info or to sign your kids up email us at email@example.com