Exercise is an important component of life. From when we first learn to walk, all the way into our older years -- exercise is an action that helps our bodies remain fit, fight off disease, and increase overall wellbeing. Held on Saturday, June 12th, Family Health & Fitness Day promotes the importance of parks and recreation helping keep families and communities active.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many families struggled to find ways to keep themselves and their children exercising. With gyms being closed, schools going remote, and sport seasons being canceled, many have felt that the past 15 months have been some of the most unhealthy in their lives. Science backs this up, as many at risk-populations increased unhealthy eating habits during the pandemic. This is particularly concerning as the CDC states childhood obesity is a growing concern, with as much as 19 percent of American children meeting obesity qualifications. However, this issue isn’t isolated to younger generations, instead, today’s adults are also living with obesity. The prevalence of obesity for American adults sits at 42 percent.
Statistics like these highlight the importance of family health and fitness. When families remain inactive, chronic health issues can arise, such as heart disease and diabetes. Every year, over 1.5 million new Americans are diagnosed with diabetes, with a current estimate of 34.2 million living with the condition. Most of these illnesses can be prevented with proper diet and exercise, however, modern society offers many comforts and conveniences that can make healthy living feel like a chore. Fast food, streaming services, and handheld technologies, no matter how much good they have produced for society, have also caused some downfall in lifestyle. That’s why education and action initiatives like Family Health & Fitness Day are so critical to the wellbeing of families across the country.
Instilling an affinity for exercise and healthy eating starts with the family. When children are brought up with positive habits like swimming, bicycle riding, or playing soccer, they are more likely to continue these physical activities into adulthood. The benefits of exercise have been well documented. It is a necessary pillar to live the most illness-free life possible. Some immediate benefits to exercise include its impact on the brain. Children 6 to 13 years of age see an improvement in cognitive function, and adults can see a helpful reduction in stress. Exercise also can boost self-esteem and reduce the risk of anxiety and depression.
Aside from helping manage weight, exercise can lower the risk of some cancers, strengthen bones and muscles, improve sleep quality, and increase life expectancy! Beyond the individual health benefits, exercising together as a family also carries several key perks. By encouraging family fitness and engaging in various activities together, parents are leaving a positive impression on their children for the years to come. Additionally, it is well-established that the mother’s diet and exercise during pregnancy affect the health of the child. But studies have also shown that fathers who regularly exercise prior to conceiving are setting their child up to have improved glucose metabolism, decreased body weight, and a decreased fat mass. So even before children enter the picture, the health habits of parents will impact their future offspring’s physical health.
Lastly, exercising as a family creates a bonding experience between everyone. These bonding experiences are radically different from sedentary activities like watching television or playing board games. Exercise requires a different set of communication and collaboration skills when done side-by-side with your family. During this bonding, parents and children will learn new sides to each other and identify what motivates and encourages every individual.
While Family Health & Fitness Day is only one day, it should be celebrated every day. Exercising and enjoying the outdoors and public parks and facilities is something families should feel proud about. By exercising as a family, you are protecting the future health of your loved ones and growing a deeper bond with those who matter most. So get outside and climb on the jungle gym, race through the grass, or play a game of basketball. It’s time we all start moving, together.
QliqSOFT is on the leading edge of healthcare communication and secure information sharing. As a leader in the healthcare technology field, we recognize the importance of every day, at-home habits that enrich the overall wellbeing of our country’s families. Regular exercise and fitness is critical to helping healthcare professionals best treat and reduce the risk of injuries and illness. So this June 12th, get outside with your loved ones, and enjoy Family Health & Fitness Day -- we sure will be! Contact us today, if you have any questions regarding our role in improving the healthcare community.
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