"Parents play a critical role in helping children to be more active and to make life long healthy choices," said Zoe Stallings, MD, a physician at Duke Primary Care in Wake Forest. "Celebrate life with physical activity." For example, she says, "plan your child's next birthday party plan as a picnic instead of a pizza party. Celebrate good grades on a report card with a scavenger hunt at a park."
The Centers for Disease Control recommends kids engage in at least an hour of physical activity each day. The CDC recommends adults engage in at least five hours of exercise each week. Yet, longer workdays and daily commutes, plus a trend toward more sedentary lifestyles means less adults are meeting those daily recommendations. It’s equally hard for kids as more schools cut physical education programs and daily recess.