We all know daily physical activity is important for our children, particularly when digital addiction, childhood obesity, anxiety and depression are on the rise. But, do we know how much is the right amount for healthy development?
In 2011-12 the Australian Bureau of Statistics conducted a health study to determine what 5 – 17 year olds daily recommended physical activity should be. Any movement in this instance, was defined as physical activity and through the use of a pedometer, some interesting data emerged.
The study revealed an average daily step count of 9,140 steps. Males recorded higher than females, and a fourth (25%) of males reached their age group target step amount, whereas only 8% of females reached their target.
So what is the correct target?
For youth, 5 – 17 years, there is now recognition that the once thought 10,000 step goal per day is too low. The Australian Bureau of Statistics uncovered 13,000 steps for boys, and 11,000 for girls is more acceptable.
The Elanation Virtual World focuses on rewarding kids as they accomplish 10,000 steps daily. We use this as a base line to form healthy habits for all children. This method has been well received from parents. “The kids are wanting to walk to school every day! Having two means the kids are able to compare steps and exercise together. As a parent it is wonderful to see the kids enthusiastic about movement” – Parent of ETURBO.
The same finding came from The US President’s Challenge Physical Activity and Fitness Awards Program, whereas The Canadian Health Measures Survey believes a minimum daily target of 12,000 steps for both boys and girls, which best estimates the 60 minutes recommended activity target.
So how can we effectively encourage our children to move more?
A great way to start is to move together, as a family. Use the time you have together to move together. For example;
- Walking to and from school (if possible) is a great start.
- After school, allow your children stay in the playground for longer as they play and run around with their friends.
- Encourage a stop at the local park on the way home.
- Incorporate Elanation’s ETURBO into your daily mix and encouraging your children to move more will be even easier.