JumpSport Trampolines and Obesity Awareness Month
Play: It's good for you!
Staying active helps fight childhood obesity
We have all heard of First Lady Michelle Obama's initiative Let's Move which is only one of several "grass roots" initiatives focused on challenging the rising epidemic of childhood obesity in America. The concern has grown so much that September, traditionally "back to school month," has also become "Childhood Obesity Awareness Month."
In July of this year the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stated that childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and tripled in adolescents in the past 30 years. Their findings showed obesity rates in the US:
• Increase from 7% in 1980 to nearly 18% in 2010 for kids ages 6 - 11
• Increased from 5% to 18% over the same period of adolescents ages 12 - 19 (1)
There is hope though! There is also evidence that some cities across the U.S. saw a reduction in the number of obese children between 2007 and 2011. Last December the New York Times reported there was a 5% drop in Philadelphia and 3% drop in Los Angeles in the childhood obesity rates. Experts found those figures to be significant because they offer the first indication that the obesity epidemic may actually be reversing.
Community organizations, health clinics, and medical professionals have been steadily working to reverse the trend of overweight kids but they're not the only ones out there making a dent in the expansive problem at hand. Organizations such as www.MomsRising.org and www.ChoicesForKids.org, are just two of the hundreds of non-government organizations now spreading the word and educating families about ways to prevent childhood obesity.
The item all these organizations have in common Education.
They all aim to:
• Educate parents about nutrition and the benefits of raising active, healthy kids, and
• Education kids on how to stay active, eat a balanced diet, and enjoy a balanced lifestyle.
And being active is something we know a thing or two about! Emphasizing physical activity as a key element in helping children get and stay fit, the Mayo Clinic recommends limiting recreational computer and TV time to 2 hours per day and simply increasing children's physical activity. Games such as tag, hide-and-seek, and jump rope, they say, "can be great for burning calories and improving fitness. [Being active] not only burns calories but also builds strong bones and muscles and helps children sleep well at night and stay alert during the day. Such habits established in childhood help adolescents maintain healthy weight despite the hormonal changes, rapid growth and social influences that often lead to overeating. And active children are more likely to become fit adults." (2)
The National Football League's campaign, NFL Play 60, encourages kids to be active for 60 minutes a day in order to help reverse the trend of childhood obesity. One of many NFL PLAY 60 programs encourages getting healthy throughout the school day by showing teachers how to incorporate short, 3-5 minute activity breaks, into their curriculum. This will not make up completely for loss of PE programs but can help along the way.
Cartoons are even getting into the act. Sprout TV, a subsidiary of PBS, encourages kids to get up and move during their learning "breaks." At night they encourage young viewers to do a Sprout Stretch routine (with real yoga poses) and "Tree Fu Tom" is all about getting kids to move! Several times during the 20 minute cartoon, Tom asks kids to "Do the moves that make the magic." Doing a 60-90 second routine with the kids following along so Tom can complete his adventure. This kind of interactive learning helps children learn movement and supports a healthy lifestyle.
And there's more good news. You don't have to be a professional athlete or medical expert to put some physical activity into your child's day. We here at JumpSport believe that our products encourage kids to get outdoors and engage in physical activity. Our goal is to provide kids with activities that are right at home and easy to access with either our backyard trampolines or fitness trampolines. Widely popular and full of cardio benefits, bouncing on a trampoline allows kids to increase their endurance and overall conditioning. Found to burn up to 20% more calories than running and far less injurious to bones and joints, bouncing on a trampoline gives kids (and adults) the feeling of freedom while experiencing zero-gravity. JumpSport, creators of the first and finest trampoline safety enclosure for backyard trampolines, provides families with high quality trampoline products allowing kids to play in a safe and protected environment outdoors in addition to engaging in learning adventures on our in-door JumpSport Fitness Trampolines.
So go ahead, make fitness fun, by putting some bounce into your family's life with a safety trampoline from JumpSport.
(1) CDC, Childhood Obesity Facts, July 10, 2012
(2) MayoClinic.com/health/childhood-obesity/DS00698/DSECTION=causes; May 4, 2012