Physical activity is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle. In combination with healthy eating, it can help prevent a range of chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and stroke, which are the three leading causes of death. Physical activity helps control weight, builds lean muscle, reduces fat, promotes strong bone, muscle and joint development, and decreases the risk of obesity. Children need 60 minutes of play with moderate to vigorous activity every day to grow up to a healthy weight.
If this sounds like a lot, consider that eight to 18 year old adolescents spend an average of 7.5 hours a day using entertainment media including TV, computers, video games, cell phones, and movies in a typical day, and only one-third of high school students get the recommended levels of physical activity. To increase physical activity, today’s children need safe routes to walk and bike ride to school, parks, playgrounds, and community centers where they can play after school, and activities like sports, dance, or fitness programs that are exciting and challenging enough to keep them engaged.
The National Kidney Foundation of Michigan (NKFM) is supporting the MI Big Green Gym initiative—a partnership between the Michigan Recreation and Park Association, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. MI Big Green Gym is designed to promote overall well-being and a healthy lifestyle through use of parks and recreation facilities. MI Big Green Gym is comprised of participating state and local parks. Click the logo to find out more.
View more information, courtesy of letsmove.gov, on living an active lifestyle or call the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan to sign up for one of our Enhance Fitness classes or learn what we're doing in schools to keep kids healthy and active.