Surely no one would deny how important it is to keep active. It is a known fact that physical activity and being healthy are directly connected and that a less active lifestyle can lead to numerous health issues. Keeping ourselves active is important, but keeping our children active is even more vital. However, despite knowing this fact many people are not aware of just how much more important it is to keep kids active. There are ample reasons why we should encourage children to take part in physical activity to contribute to their lifelong health, as we will discuss below.
It may seem like an obvious fact to state, but children that are more physically active tend to have less likelihood of being obese or overweight. Even though this fact is an obvious one, more children are becoming less active and becoming overweight. As well as this scary statistic, a report which came out recently from the World Health Organisation makes the suggestion that by 2030, the UK will be the most obese country in Europe.
Such a rise in obesity is sure to come with an increase in heart disease and other health issues deemed to be chronic, for example type 2 diabetes. Hence we already have examples of why keeping children active will contribute positively to their lifelong health and is hence more important than keeping ourselves active. Certainly, there is an argument that as we get older we need to make more effort to care for ourselves; however, we should not forget the good foundation that our health was furnished with when we were young.
Bones and Muscles
Teenagers, as well as pre-teens, are developing at a rate much faster than adults; in fact, the early years of life tend to be the ones that define the health we will have in the future. When children are active they are likely to develop strong bones and muscles. This has a positive impact on their health but also means they decrease their risk of injuries as well as osteoporosis and other such diseases, especially considering the strength of bones in youth is a strong contributing factor.
Of course, the increase in technology has played a huge role in why children are not as active as in days gone by. The majority of people will accept that this has had a direct impact on health problems such as obesity; however, other more subtle effects are sometimes missed. Posture, for example, is affected when a child sits for too long in front of the TV. Whilst that is most definitely worrying, what is of more concern is the rise in phones and tablets in recent years. Such portable screens mean that children spend long periods of time in positions that will have a negative impact on their posture.
Most parents will agree on another impact that a lack of physical activity has on children, that being a lazy attitude to life in general that will grow as the child grows. Not only will lack of bone strength and obesity stop people from engaging in physical activity, but they will also lack the desire. The longer such a habit goes on the harder it is to break and this will certainly be truly felt once the current generation of children becomes adults. In addition, children will become more isolated and less able to socialise since they spend a huge amount of time at home alone, or perhaps with other people but not interacting.
As mentioned already, it is difficult to foresee the exact effect of modern life on the physical health of future generations. That being said, even though we have a much deeper understanding of diet, physical health and such related issues, there is a deterioration in the health of the general population. Hence, what we are asking is not whether things will be worse in the future but rather how much worse things will get. Outdoor activities like bouldering in Croydon are vital to counteract this.