Physical activity is beneficial for both physical and mental health, but kids today are more sedentary than ever. According to the new 2018 U.S. Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth, “The United States earned a D- in overall physical activity, with only about 24% of kids ages 6-17 getting the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity every day.”
fit recently spoke with Dusty Coleman, a former Major League Baseball Player and 12-year professional, to discover ways kids and athletes can overcome obstacles to physical activity.
What are the biggest benefits daily activity can provide young athletes?
The biggest benefits of consistent daily activity are energy level and momentum. By staying active, you create more energy and increased focus. Taking too much time off can make it more difficult to get back on track. When you start your activity again, you may have to go through pains or soreness again. I believe the more consistent you keep your activity level, it will allow for you to reach higher goals.
Young athletes today often experience many barriers to physical activity. How do you overcome obstacles and engage in regular movement?
For young athletes trying to get started on a regular routine of physical activity, it’s important to start with something easily attainable. For example, start with push-ups and jumping jacks every morning or evening. Then, start to add in more challenging activities. It can also be beneficial to find friends with the same goals. Get into a routine with them and keep each other accountable.
What suggestions would you provide coaches or parents facing common challenges such as, busy schedules, lack of motivation, disinterest, or self-doubt?
I believe that coaches and parents can motivate their players and kids by helping them understand the benefits of an active lifestyle regardless of athletic performance. Find ways to make the activity fun to start and then build in the tough challenges later. Help them set goals, track progress and celebrate their energy and accomplishments.
Learn more about the benefits of physical activity with our video, Be Active Every Day! Then, discover new ways kids can move throughout the day with the Stand Up Challenge.
In this edition of the Sanford fitSports video, we’ll see how daily activity, proper mechanics, and body movements are influential when hitting the baseball. Think fit, be fit!
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