Our kids are better, faster and stronger than we were, right? After all, when we were kids there weren’t so many organized sports like there are now. Kids are playing organized sports at a much younger age. Parents now are much more involved in their kids lives and in keeping their kids active, so they should be faster, right? Unfortunately, they aren’t. Well some might be. But overall, kids are much less fit than their parents were. In an analysis of studies on millions of children from around the world, the Milwaukee Journal reported that on average, it takes kids 90 seconds longer now than it did 30 years ago to run a mile. Overall, todays kids were found to be 15% less fit than their parents were and this was found for both boys and girls and across all ages.
The key conclusion from these studies is that children are not active enough today and there are a number of reasons for this, some we can change and some we cannot. What would be ideal would be for parents to recognize the importance of their children being active. We make sure our kids do their homework, brush their teeth, do chores, etc. 60 minutes or more of vigorous physical activity (accumulated throughout the day) should be included in one of those must do categories. Our challenge is to make it fun which we have the power to do. We were kids once too and had fun being active even though it wasn’t organized.
Joel D Mason, DPT, SCS, CSCS
Physical Therapist, Sports Certified Specialist
Sports, Spine and Work Center, Agnesian HealthCare