Relative to shortage of funding among public and private schools, they are left with no choice but to cut on some of their school programs and most often than not, they usually sacrifice physical education classes and their sports programs. Unfortunately, although saving some money, schools have unwittingly contributed to the continued rise in obesity in the U.S. population. And even when physical education is offered to the children it is never enough to meet the federal guidelines of at least 1 hour of activity each day of the week.
Aside from what mentioned above, technology and computers have also contributed to a population of sedentary children and teens since many of the daily activities that once required physical motion can now be accomplished with the press of a button such as washing dishes, mowing lawns (self-propel) down to changing the channel on the television. This further added to the growing number of obese children.
Indeed, obesity is becoming very rampant because of sedentary lifestyle common to children of today. It is for this reason that mass media attention has been given to the decline in physical fitness of the population and the need for an increase in physical activity to decrease the ever rising health risks that plague a sedentary population and ultimately improve the overall health of children and adults.
Accordingly, parents play a vital role in improving or increasing the physical activities of children. Parents can begin by role modeling physical activity for their children. In fact, some parents and children are turning to fitness classes for kids to increase the amount of activity that children get as well as the time to bond together over a specific activity. Parents and children alike have to take steps in increasing physical fitness activities since according to the National Education Association , only 8% of schools have physical education class hence, relying on the school system for such activities may not be a logical choice.
One good thing to note though is the fact that children are the second fastest growing population in gyms around the country as stated by the International Health, Racquet and Sports club Association (IHRSA).
There are several fitness centers where both parent and their children can be physically fit while enjoying each other’s company. One is the YMCA which is one club that caters specifically to families and single parents encouraging the children and adults to work out and take classes together.
Gold’s Gym is another facility that is offering classes specifically for children with the added incentive of events and competitions at the conclusion of the class sessions. Junior Jumpers is their gymnastics class and Sport Aerobics Program is popular because it combines dance, gymnastics and aerobics.
There are other fitness clubs around the country which engage children to fitness activities. These classes range from aerobics classes specifically designed to accommodate the needs and requirements of children, to dance, spinning and in Brandon Florida the Athletic Club connects children as young as 5 in sporting games to increase their heart rate and improve their cardiovascular fitness.
One vital information that should be kept in mind when involving children in work out is that their minds and bodies should be occupied so that they aren’t even aware that they are working out. The motivating factors for adults to continue to plug away at the treadmill or elliptical trainer don’t work as well for the young child or early adult. Their ability to comprehend future consequences related to present events is extremely limited. Therefore making the exercise fun and exciting has much better results.
However, we all may want to take that piece of information about working out from children and strive to make our own efforts at exercise and physical activity more energizing and motivating. As adults, we may be able to understand the consequences but that isn’t always the best motivator to keep plugging away when our minds would rather be reading a book!