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  • Study: Kids are less fit than their parents were

    The American Heart Association, whose conference featured the research yesterday, says it’s the first to show that children’s fitness has declined worldwide over the last three decades.

    “It makes sense. We have kids that are less active than before,” said Dr. Stephen Daniels, a University of Colorado pediatrician and spokesman for the heart association.

    Health experts recommend that children 6 and older get 60 minutes of moderately vigorous activity accumulated over a day. Only one-third of American kids do now.


    “Kids aren’t getting enough opportunities to build up that activity over the course of the day,” Daniels said. “Many schools, for economic reasons, don’t have any physical education at all. Some rely on recess” to provide exercise.

    Sam Kass, a White House chef and head of first lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move program, stressed the role of schools in a speech to the conference Monday.

    “We are currently facing the most sedentary generation of children in our history,” Kass said.
    http://www.concordmonitor.com/news/n...r-parents-were

    Besides a diet that isn't good, I think the other problem is that kids are doing stuff such as video games instead of playing outside. When I was a kid, kids played from the moment they got up till night. Some stayed out after night. We played video games, but I don't think it was anywhere near as much. We rode bikes, raced, jumped on trampolines, raced, and chased each other. I think this has a lot to do with things.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Lanie View Post
    http://www.concordmonitor.com/news/n...r-parents-were

    Besides a diet that isn't good, I think the other problem is that kids are doing stuff such as video games instead of playing outside. When I was a kid, kids played from the moment they got up till night. Some stayed out after night. We played video games, but I don't think it was anywhere near as much. We rode bikes, raced, jumped on trampolines, raced, and chased each other. I think this has a lot to do with things.
    Well, you'll notice that the excerpt points to schools not providing P.E. as a major problem. P.E. was a negligible contribution to fitness when I was a kid. Playing outside unsupervised and walking/bike riding was the major factor then.

    Adults squelch vigorous exercise. You can't adequately supervise 20 kids who are climbing trees, running out of sight, doing stunts off rocks and stuff, or playing in a creek bed (or urban equivalent). When adults are involved, it's hurry up and wait. Kids spend most of their time standing and waiting for the next kid to perform the "activity".
    "Alexa, slaughter the fatted calf."

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Gingersnap View Post
      Well, you'll notice that the excerpt points to schools not providing P.E. as a major problem. P.E. was a negligible contribution to fitness when I was a kid. Playing outside unsupervised and walking/bike riding was the major factor then.

      Adults squelch vigorous exercise. You can't adequately supervise 20 kids who are climbing trees, running out of sight, doing stunts off rocks and stuff, or playing in a creek bed (or urban equivalent). When adults are involved, it's hurry up and wait. Kids spend most of their time standing and waiting for the next kid to perform the "activity".
      PE was usually some pretty rigorous physical activity when I was in school, most specifically grade school. We always had calisthenics and some manner of aerobic running for at least 15-20 minutes. By high school, we were required to engage in some sort of sport. Granted this was a private high school, so there were fewer kids to find a spot in some particular sport, but even our public school counterparts had requirements for some fairly physical activity at the time.

      That having been said, PE and recess definitely are not the end-all, be-all of physical activity in kids, to be sure. Helicopter parents acting as safety police wrapping their Sweet Presshuss in bubble-wrap and kevlar before they are allowed to ride their bicycle around, but never out of sight, most assuredly aren't helping matters at all. Cell phones and video games are a major contributor here, too. We had an old OdysseyII and that little hand-held football game, but we were not to use either inside on a pretty day, and we weren't allowed to take games like that to school with us. Now every kid gets on the bus and starts playing games and texting on their phones, and they keep doing so all afternoon at home on the couch. Parents need to get back in the habit of kicking kids out the door when they get home from school. We'll have far fewer fat kids that way, we'll have far fewer cases of asthma that way, we'll have far fewer cases of some dreaded allergy that way.
      Bask in the warmth of the Deep South
      No one will be denied:
      Big law suits and bathroom toots;
      We're all getting Dixie-fried.
      But somewhere Hank and Lefty
      Are rollin' in their graves
      While kudzu vines grow over signs that read "Jesus Saves."

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Lanie View Post
        http://www.concordmonitor.com/news/n...r-parents-were

        Besides a diet that isn't good, I think the other problem is that kids are doing stuff such as video games instead of playing outside. When I was a kid, kids played from the moment they got up till night. Some stayed out after night. We played video games, but I don't think it was anywhere near as much. We rode bikes, raced, jumped on trampolines, raced, and chased each other. I think this has a lot to do with things.
        I think it's mostly diet. Kids eat too much too often. Parents and teachers shut them up by giving them something to eat and a soda or juice. Breakfast, morning snack, lunch, lunch dessert, afternoon snack, dinner, and dessert every day.
        "Faith is nothing but a firm assent of the mind : which, if it be regulated, as is our duty, cannot be afforded to anything but upon good reason, and so cannot be opposite to it."

        -John Locke

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        • #5
          Originally posted by scott View Post
          I think it's mostly diet. Kids eat too much too often. Parents and teachers shut them up by giving them something to eat and a soda or juice. Breakfast, morning snack, lunch, lunch dessert, afternoon snack, dinner, and dessert every day.
          I noticed when my niece was in grade school that they were giving kids a lot more food. Kids could bring their own snack AND get ice cream. Some of the stuff they serve for breakfast is unreal.

          Ginger, about kids and supervision, I do have a confession to make. I often did not want to substitute for elementary schools. That's because I knew I couldn't watch every kid for every second. They got hurt so easily and guess who was held responsible. Yeah. Those kids will go to the office for ice over something that didn't even break skin. We need to supervise kids, but we need to also let kids be kids. My parents didn't want to let me have a bike. They feared I'd get hit by a car. I had to nag for one. I didn't get hit by a car, but I sure did have some accidents. I once rode my bike and wrecked. I looked at the blood gushing down my leg along with dirt. I went inside, cleaned up, and went back out. lol. Today, that might be considered a catastrophe if it happened at school.

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          • #6
            The schools are held hostage by the lawyers hired by parents. I'm sure a lot of teachers hate all that but there are enough parents and teachers who buy into the 'precious snowflake' idea and the rest of the teachers are threatened by the lawsuits.

            Sadly, what was a reaction to litigation becomes a cultural superstition: children are too frail to endure healthy, self-directed play (or seeing red marks on papers, or not eating for 4 hours, or whatever).
            "Alexa, slaughter the fatted calf."

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Gingersnap View Post
              The schools are held hostage by the lawyers hired by parents. I'm sure a lot of teachers hate all that but there are enough parents and teachers who buy into the 'precious snowflake' idea and the rest of the teachers are threatened by the lawsuits.

              Sadly, what was a reaction to litigation becomes a cultural superstition: children are too frail to endure healthy, self-directed play (or seeing red marks on papers, or not eating for 4 hours, or whatever).
              And in the process creating frail children.

              I caught a parent wiping down the monkey bars with Purell. When I asked if she planned to pour it into the sand on the field she said she doesn't allow her kids to play in the field. Her oldest (now 18) was allergic to everything as a child, and was cured on a month-long scouting excursion. Her husband told me that the Pediatrician said that it was good for him to get some rashes and experience a non-sterile environment. She never believed it and said it was the homeopathic supplements (that the teenager never took).

              I'm not suggesting that it isn't a good idea to clean the playground from time to time, often in flu season. However, it's counterproductive to shield kids from any exposure.
              "Faith is nothing but a firm assent of the mind : which, if it be regulated, as is our duty, cannot be afforded to anything but upon good reason, and so cannot be opposite to it."

              -John Locke

              Comment


              • #8
                Oh!! But they might get hurt…..


                Solution!
                If it pays, it stays

                Comment


                • #9
                  My mother was definitely not one of those athletic, adventurous parents. We didn't camp, hike, etc. However, we did have a swimming pool, woods in our neighborhood, and bikes, go carts, skateboards, pogo sticks, etc. We annoyed her if we were in the house, and she didn't necessarily like a houseful of all our friends in the house, so anytime we were in there too long the order came "go outside and play!". "But it's cold!" Then get a coat, a hat and some gloves!"

                  It's pretty hard to get fat outside. Snacks were limited to one snack after school and one snack after dinner.

                  There really was no magic to our exercise (although we were all involved in organized dance or sports as well). All 3 of us were thin kids and we really couldn't understand 10 year old fat kids.

                  Food was for meals, not for grazing or entertainment. And we needed permission to eat. Another constant refrain was "this is not a restaurant" and "the kitchen is closed".

                  Soda was a treat (usually reserved for the rare occasion when my parents went out and got a babysitter, or when my grandparents came down and brought RC cola by the case), but it was never served at the dinner table. Candy was for Halloween and Easter (and the stash my mother kept in the top corner of the cabinet...god forbid you foraged in her stash!)
                  Not where I breathe, but where I love, I live...
                  Robert Southwell, S.J.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by phillygirl View Post
                    My mother was definitely not one of those athletic, adventurous parents. We didn't camp, hike, etc. However, we did have a swimming pool, woods in our neighborhood, and bikes, go carts, skateboards, pogo sticks, etc. We annoyed her if we were in the house, and she didn't necessarily like a houseful of all our friends in the house, so anytime we were in there too long the order came "go outside and play!". "But it's cold!" Then get a coat, a hat and some gloves!"

                    It's pretty hard to get fat outside. Snacks were limited to one snack after school and one snack after dinner.

                    There really was no magic to our exercise (although we were all involved in organized dance or sports as well). All 3 of us were thin kids and we really couldn't understand 10 year old fat kids.

                    Food was for meals, not for grazing or entertainment. And we needed permission to eat. Another constant refrain was "this is not a restaurant" and "the kitchen is closed".

                    Soda was a treat (usually reserved for the rare occasion when my parents went out and got a babysitter, or when my grandparents came down and brought RC cola by the case), but it was never served at the dinner table. Candy was for Halloween and Easter (and the stash my mother kept in the top corner of the cabinet...god forbid you foraged in her stash!)
                    Grazing and bribery have become the norm. Kids graze most of the day and aren't hungry by dinner. At the table, they are enticed to finish their vegetables by offering cake and ice cream after dinner. Another new development is constant consumption of soda and sports drinks. When I was a kid we drank water.
                    "Faith is nothing but a firm assent of the mind : which, if it be regulated, as is our duty, cannot be afforded to anything but upon good reason, and so cannot be opposite to it."

                    -John Locke

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by scott View Post
                      Grazing and bribery have become the norm. Kids graze most of the day and aren't hungry by dinner. At the table, they are enticed to finish their vegetables by offering cake and ice cream after dinner. Another new development is constant consumption of soda and sports drinks. When I was a kid we drank water.
                      Yes, I notice at the kids sporting events, when they are young, not only do they have sports drinks, but they have "snacks" (granola bar, crackers, etc.). We had water and orange slices. My friend, who is almost 25 years older than me, laughs when I complain about the kids getting a "snack" at the games, other than an orange...his football coach (who was a maniac) wouldn't let them have water and would guard the water fountain during practice, and also make certain they didn't try to drink in the showers. Something about "toughening" them up. His coach was kind of an idiot.

                      My niece's stepmother and father were being assholes one night at dinner. She was a tiny thing, and didn't eat much. I could get her to eat a bit more by coaxing her to eat "2 more pieces of chicken", etc. My brother grabbed her plate, informed me that they didn't "beg" her to eat, and the consequence was that she wouldn't be able to have dessert (it was my birthday dinner). Of course, I let her sit on my lap and eat some of my cupcake...they had let her eat potato chips less than an hour before dinner, so it was their fault that she wasn't hungry at dinner. A kid's stomach is only so big and if you let them fill it with garbage before hand, of course they're not going to be hungry.

                      My mother was a bit extreme about meals, though. We had to eat everything on our plates (although she doesn't recall it now!). I hated everything as a kid, but in order to try to get through the meal, I ate the worst thing first (usually rice) and worked my way around the plate, saving the most edible for last. I actually vomited at the table a few times because I hated the food so much (mac and cheese, made by mother, was abominable). And I learned that my sister's advice to mix the rice in the applesauce was way off base...it just ruined the applesauce. I still eat my food one thing at a time, but now I circle it to eat protein first, then vegetable, then starch...hoping that I'm full enough before I get to the starch to just leave it there. It took me a long time, though to not eat everything on my plate, because that was such a huge thing growing up. Starving children in China and Africa and all that nonsense.
                      Not where I breathe, but where I love, I live...
                      Robert Southwell, S.J.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by phillygirl View Post
                        Starving children in China and Africa and all that nonsense.
                        My argument to that is that I'm not helping starving children by forcing myself to eat.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Lanie View Post
                          My argument to that is that I'm not helping starving children by forcing myself to eat.
                          Yeah, when I was seven my parents didn't buy that argument.
                          Not where I breathe, but where I love, I live...
                          Robert Southwell, S.J.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Lanie View Post
                            My argument to that is that I'm not helping starving children by forcing myself to eat.
                            Originally posted by phillygirl View Post
                            Yeah, when I was seven my parents didn't buy that argument.
                            Apparently "here, send it to them" was considered disrespectful.
                            "Faith is nothing but a firm assent of the mind : which, if it be regulated, as is our duty, cannot be afforded to anything but upon good reason, and so cannot be opposite to it."

                            -John Locke

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by scott View Post
                              Apparently "here, send it to them" was considered disrespectful.
                              But funny.

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