Childhood obesity is becoming an epidemic. According to the CDC, obesity in children has more than doubled in the past 30 years and has quadrupled in adolescents over the same time period. It's well known that staying active can help combat obesity, which is why it's so important for parents to help establish healthy habits in their kids from an early age. In order to promote fitness in families, the Health Information Resource Center has established September 27th as Family Health and Fitness Day. On this day, local organizations are welcomed to put on health related events at schools, parks, churches, malls, and other community locations. In honor of this event, Resurgens Spine Center has put together a list of ways families can stay fit together.
Make Active Playtime Part of Your Routine
Kids-especially younger ones-are full of energy. So why not harness that energy by scheduling daily active play? After school or after dinner is the perfect time to play with your kids. Hide and seek, kickball, or jumping around at the playground are all perfect ways for you and your kids to stay active together.
Walk or Bike Instead of Driving
If you're taking a short trip to a store or event in your neighborhood, try walking or riding a bike instead of driving. Instead of seeing walks as a chore, look at them as an opportunity to burn some extra calories. Not only will this help you get some exercise, but walking places with your kids will give you some time to talk with them and become closer as a family. Not only that, but walking places will instill these healthy habits in your kids for years to come.
Make Family Gatherings Active with Sports
Are you planning a reunion, birthday party, or other family gathering? Well why not turn them into active gatherings by organizing a sport to play? Younger kids will enjoy playing tag or racing each other while older kids can play organized sports like soccer, basketball, or volleyball. You can use these get-togethers as a chance to bond with your family while staying fit together.
Turn Chores into Family Fitness Time
Nobody likes doing chores, kids least of all. But what if you made chores fun by doing them together? Make chores into a game by challenging your kids to see who can rake the biggest pile of leaves or who can pull the most weeds from the garden. When it snows, shovel the sidewalk with your kids and then build a snowman. There are many ways to turn chores into a fun game, so be creative!
Family Health and Fitness Day events are popping up all around the country, so check and see what's going on in your area. You can even plan your own event and help other families stay fit together!