By Judi Sheppard Missett, Jazzercise Founder and CEO
Building a strong foundation at a young age not only offers health benefits into old age, but immediate results as well. Active kids equal healthy adults, and with National Physical Fitness & Sports Month in May, now is a great time to get the family moving! While there are a wide range of benefits when kids exercise
, here are our top five.
5 - Better Sleep
Physically fit kids sleep better and handle physical and emotional challenges more effectively. Active kids enjoy improved psychological wellbeing, including self-confidence and higher self-esteem.
4 - All Kids Benefit
The percentage of obese kids and teens has more than doubled in the past 30 years. All children, even less-coordinated ones, need to be physically active. Activity is especially helpful for the physical and psychological wellbeing of children with weight problems.
3 - Develops Healthy Habits
Kids who exercise regularly at an early age develop healthy habits into adulthood. Parents who are role models for active lifestyles provide children with opportunities for increased physical activity and the family makes healthy decisions together.
2 - Improves Behavior
Strong evidence suggests that physical activity, outdoor play and time in nature improve behavior problems in kids of all ages. One of the reasons natural settings reduce ADHD symptoms is because children’s stress levels fall within minutes of seeing green spaces.
1 - Fights Disease
Physical activity helps kids control weight, lower blood pressure, raise HDL ("good") cholesterol and reduce the risk of diabetes as well as some kinds of cancer. Spending time outside raises levels of Vitamin D and strengthens children’s bone mass.
As part of the Let’s Move!
initiative to stamp out childhood obesity, Jazzercise, Inc. is hosting free Kids Get Fit
events at schools worldwide in honor of National Physical Fitness and Sports Month
in May. Kids Get Fit is a free community outreach program designed to help school districts promote kids’ fitness as a way of life. It was established as a part of the Junior Jazzercise program to teach children the importance of establishing healthy habits at an early age that last a lifetime.