Oftentimes people look to their personal trainers for more than just a workout; they want to know how to embrace health and well-being as a lifestyle rather than forty-five minutes three times a week. They want to know how to create a healthy environment for not only themselves, but also their children.
One topic that frequently comes up in personal trainer education courses is childhood obesity. According to the Center for Disease Control, “seventeen percent of children aged 2-19 are obese.” We also know that obese children typically become obese adults, and obese adults experience an increase in life-altering illnesses.
There are a host of other factors that contribute to childhood obesity. There are fewer pedestrian communities and fewer areas dedicated to outdoor play for children. Parents are afraid (rightfully so in some cases!) to let their children play unsupervised and overly supervised sports are packed with parents on the sidelines providing excessive amounts of sugar-filled “energy” drinks and snacks.
Video games and the internet have also contributed to a sedentary lifestyle that, coupled with busy parents who rely on fast food or “convenient” food, is a recipe for ill health and obesity.
So what are some solutions you can offer your clients who want to know how to get their kids interested in health and well-being?
First of all, it is important to start when your children are young. You decide what you buy at the grocery store, so use this power to your advantage. Another great option is to get kids involved with a local farm in your area. Small Ones Farm in Amherst, Massachusetts is an organic farm that offers programs to teach children about organic farming and humane farm practices. If you are looking for something similar in Minnesota or your home state, check out the Northern Gardener for details about similar activites.
Getting kids involved with fun activities on the farm can inspire them (and you!) to have your own garden, grow your own vegetables, and afford you opportunities to teach your children the importance of growing and buying organic, locally-grown produce. Try it out and let me know if there are farms or programs in your area that you’d recommend to other parents.
Good luck to you!
Learn more about the Health Fitness Specialist degree programs at Globe University/Minnesota School of Business.