Busy schedules and life's daily demands can make it difficult for parents to ensure that their children are practicing healthy habits on a regular basis. According to the YMCA's Family Health Snapshot - a survey of parents that gauges their children's activity levels during the school year - less than 20 percent of the nation's children get 60 minutes of physical activity, read books and eat at least eight fruits and vegetables every day.
Summer is the natural time for kids to get up, get out and get moving, but sometimes when the school year ends, so does a child's exposure to activities that keep the body and mind active. According to the American Journal of Public Health, children gain weight two to three times faster during the summer vacation than during the school year.
At the Woodson YMCA, we know parents struggle to keep their kids physically and intellectually active every day. We want to help ensure that fewer kids are at risk of childhood obesity and more kids do well in school.
On April 27, the Woodson YMCA will celebrate the YMCA's annual Healthy Kids Day with a free community event to get kids moving and families living healthier. It is the Y's national initiative to improve the health and well-being of families and to help them get a jump on creating a healthier, more active summer. The Y believes it is not just a single day of fun, active play and learning - but a kick-off to help parents plan and create a healthier summer for their kids. Below are a few ideas that families can begin doing now and throughout the summer to stay healthy.
? Begin planning now for summer activities. Check with the Y or the local parks and recreation for opportunities with day or resident camp, swimming, arts and crafts or sports.
? Start a book series and read together each night as a family. Reading at night keeps the brain buzzing and young minds active.
? Drink water. Have fun with flavor; give it some pizzazz with a slice of lemon, lime, orange or even cucumber.
? Start walking. Map out a new neighborhood or hiking trail in your area and get your family to explore on foot.
As a nonprofit organization committed to youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, we invite local families to join us for a free afternoon of swimming, games, vendors, exercise activities, music, healthy food and much more. Our Healthy Kids Day kick-off will be at the Woodson YMCA-Aspirus Branch from noon to 3 p.m. April 27. In addition, on that same day, the Y's satellite location in Mosinee will host its version of Healthy Kids Day from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Look forward to an active, healthy, fun-filled day!