I recently watched the HBO documentary “The Weight of The Nation”. Wow, what an eye opener. The second episode covered childhood obesity and it got me thinking about my own son and his health. As we have talked about before, he doesn’t exactly eat a lot of vegetables, so we are working on that. Next step, more exercise. Alek is a pretty active kid, but he definitely spends his fair share of time in front of the TV or playing video games. He is by no means obese, but I feel like he should be more active than he is now.
According to The Center For Disease Control, childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. When I was a kid, we were always outside playing, we walked to school, we rode our bikes to our friend’s house, we actually had physical education during school, we were just more active. So how can we as parents get our kids to move more and become more active? Here are a couple of ideas that my son and I came up with together:
- Make family activities more active. Go on a bike ride or a short walk.
- Instead of calling or texting friends/neighbors, walk or ride your bike to their house.
- Make up games that involve physical activity. We created a game to help Alek hang onto the football. He has to carry the ball with him when at home, and if we are able to knock it out and cause him to “fumble”, he has to do 10 pushups.
- Plan activities while on vacation. On our recent trip to Washington DC, we scheduled a day to rent bikes and take a bike ride to Mount Vernon. It was a 9 mile trip along the Potomac River, and it was one of the highlights of the entire trip.
These are just a few ideas to get your kids up and moving. I would love to hear some more ways that you use to keep your kids active.