In combination with healthy eating, physical activity is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle.
Physical activity helps control weight, builds lean muscle, supports the development of strong bone, muscle and joints, and decreases the risk of obesity and a range of other health problems. Children need 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity every day to maintain a healthy weight.
To increase physical activity, today’s children need safe routes to walk and bike. Parks, playgrounds and community centers where children can safely play are necessary. Activities like sports, dance or fitness programs need to be readily available to every child.
Sixty minutes of activity each day can seem overwhelming to anyone, but it doesn’t have to occur at once. It’s easy to fit activity into your child’s schedule, especially after you identify a few activities that your child enjoys. You can help shape a child’s attitudes and behaviors toward physical activity by providing a positive example by leading an active lifestyle yourself. Kids who feel supported by friends and families to become active and are surrounded by others interested in physical activity are more likely to participate. Make physical activity fun!