This I Believe

Eric - Mill Hall, Pennsylvania
Entered on April 22, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: children, sports

Inactiveness among the Youth

I believe over the years children have become less active and have sadly become quite lazy. I believe something needs to be done to keep this problem from continuing and worsening. I do think there are multiple factors leading to the issue of inactive children.

One factor that contributes to inactive children lies in the parents’ hands. The Parents’ busier work schedules result in less recreation time together. Children are sitting through a full day of school and then sent to a day care or after school program. This usually means the children are expected to be inside and do more immobile actives.

Another real problem is with these busy parents comes fast and non-nutritious meals. The kids are eating more fast food meals, making it more likely for them to become obese. Poor nutrition results in decreased energy levels as well. So I think if the parents could simply create time or plan ahead healthy meals, it would be beneficial and eliminate some of the problem.

The parents are not the only overly busy ones. Children are also being so overly scheduled with school assignments that they are more stressed then ever. Stress and exhaustion can make it difficult to be active and also increase bad eating habits. With such a routine, these children are unable to create activities that are fun and allow them to use their imaginations, as well as stay active and fit.

Kids are meant to have fun, plain and simple. They are suppose to go outside, run around and have fun. It is good exercise and a natural stress reliever that’s why I found it hard to believe that many school districts are now eliminating recess times and excluding physical education from the curriculum. It’s truly the last thing these kids need; not only for their health, but inactiveness is beginning to become a social issue. I’m even noticing this in my own family. My nephews are now seven and five years old, and it frustrates me to see them in front of the television. They have replaced footballs with x- box controllers and have traded best friends for “online buddies.” I feel the parents don’t object because instead of having the children running around getting involved in these terrible things, such as being involved in dangerous situations, they are safe at home. Unless I am just wrong, it all seems very counterproductive towards these kids’ success and their ability to develop many important skills that are learned by participating in some kind of organized sport.

I also remember when I was a kid; there wasn’t anything that could keep me in the house. I was constantly outside with my younger brother and my neighbor, playing a game of football, bike riding, or swimming in the river. Now all of those activities have been taken over by video games, computer time, or television.

In the end, I’m hoping that I am wrong. Kids are actually getting outside and enjoying life. I feel that active, healthy kids grow to lead productive, well balanced lives and I think that is what we really need right now. We need to get back to the basics and just enjoy the simple things in life, and the first place we should start is with youth of this nation. That is just something I believe.