ACE’s Top 10 Reasons Children Should Exercise
In the past parents worried more about their children being home by the time the street lights came on then whether or not they got the recommended amount of daily activity. Today parents are advised to monitor their children’s body mass index (height-to-weight ratio) as the obesity epidemic among children ages 6-19 has reached 15 percent, almost quadruple what it was in the late 1960s. Physical activity will not only help today’s children by preventing them from becoming obese or helping them to lose weight if necessary, it will also teach them healthy habits that can last a lifetime. Here are ACE’s top reasons kids should get plenty of exercise:
- Kids who exercise are more likely to keep exercising as an adult.
- Exercise helps kids achieve and maintain a healthy body weight.
- Regular physical activity helps build and maintain strong, healthy muscles, bones and joints.
- Exercise aids in the development of important interpersonal skills—this is especially true for participation in team sports.
- Exercise improves the quantity and quality of sleep.
- Research shows that exercise promotes improved school attendance and enhances academic performance.
- Kids who exercise have greater self-esteem and better self-images.
- Participating in regular physical activity prevents or delays the development of many chronic diseases (e.g., heart disease, diabetes, obesity, hypertension) and promotes health.
- Children who are active report fewer symptoms of anxiety and depression and a better overall mood.
- Exercise helps improve motor coordination and enhances the development of various motor performance skills.