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Because childhood should be simple ...

Get Moving with Checkpoint

Activity. To be healthy, our kids have to get moving. We will use this week to talk about the importance of kids increasing their activity and working toward at least 60 minutes of movement a day. We will give them a few ideas to get started.

Resources and Printables

Kids get moving!

OK, maybe you don't sit around thinking about what you'll look like or how you'll feel in 10 or 20 years. You may not even be thinking about high school yet. So, let's talk about you, today. Mainly, how active you are.

A lot of kids your age aren't getting enough activity. They don't run or play enough. How about you?

Every time you jump rope, dance around the house or ride your bike, you are getting exercise. Exercise helps you stay healthy. It can also help you do better at sports and keep your brain alert while doing homework.

At Cook Children's, our doctors say today's kids are not getting enough exercise so they're not as healthy as they should be. But you can stay healthy just by increasing your daily activity.

It would be best if you can get 60 minutes of total activity in a day. On days when it's not possible to find a full hour, try to at least get 30 minutes. It doesn't even have to be all at once. You can break it up during the day.

And, because your parents are going on the Web site with you, ask them to join you in your daily activity. Make it a family day. Go for a walk together. Go bike riding. Dance around the house. Play at a park or in your backyard.

Here are some other ideas:

Outdoors

Indoors

Whatever you choose to do, it's OK. The important thing is to do something and make it last.

Parents get moving!

The health of today's children is frightening.

So, we've got to get our kids moving and as a parent you can make that happen now. Think about the many ways your family can be active in your daily life, like going for an evening walk after dinner, riding bikes together or playing a game of basketball.

Your kids can find plenty of opportunity to become more active, while having fun. Here are some ideas:

Maybe you aren't sure how active your child is on a daily basis. With Checkup Challenge, you have the perfect opportunity to discuss the importance of exercise with your child and keep track of the day's activity.

As a parent, monitor your child's time spent on sedentary activities such as watching TV, going online and playing video games. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests limiting your child's "screen time" to two hours a day.

In contrast, the National Association for Sports and Physical Activity recommends that school-aged kids get one hour or more of moderate and vigorous physical activity on most days.

There are many ways for your child to meet these recommendations simply by being a kid. They can run around in the back yard or go to a park and play. Let them skip, jump or do a silly dance. The reward could include a good night of sleep for everyone.

A child with a chronic health condition or disability should not be entirely excluded from fitness activities. Some activities may need to be modified or adapted, and some may be too risky depending on the condition. Consult your doctor about which activities are safe for your child.

Tip: Make "increasing activity" a family goal. Then ask your friends to get involved! Perhaps other families would like to walk to school together or have everyone meet at the park for a game of tag.

Leaders get moving!

In week two, the focus is on being active and showing kids why it's important to be active. Activity is the cornerstone of the Checkup Challenge program.

The kids you are leading need physical activity to help build strength, coordination, confidence and to begin a healthy lifestyle that continues into adulthood.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the FITT Method, which is:

Unfortunately, as kids get older, many of them don't meet these recommendations. They have more control over their own time and are distracted by computers, TV and video games.

Let's reverse the trend and get kids moving. Ideally, kids will talk to their parents about getting involved and making exercise a family event. Your kids can find plenty of opportunity to become more active and still have fun. Here are some ideas for easy, fun activities.

Outdoors

Indoors

Checkup Challenge checklist

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

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