I am taking a hiatus from running mechanics on this post…
This past weekend I was attending a Faulty Movement Patterns seminar by Dr. Craig Liebenson when I was introduced to this video below and the website Designed to Move. Before you read any further, I would suggest you watch the video in it’s entirety.
With 9 & 11 y.o. boys of my own, this video struck home. Thankfully, they both play lacrosse, do a lot of running and triathlons. However, the video is sobering. The advent of antibiotics, hygiene, food supply and nutrition has gradually increased out lifespan and quality of life…until this generation. Why will this generation not continue increasing the human lifespan? Simple – a lack of activity. This generation will be less physically active than any previous generation.
On the website, you can scroll down on the main page and find out loads of info. If you really want to get into it, the website’s full report is found here. They have done a good job of literature referencing in that report.
In it’s entirety, the problem goes well beyond just the lifespan of physically inactive children. As the pictures below indicate, there is also a financial impact and a significant loss of quality of life. Please click on each picture to see the financial, educational and other consequences of physical inactivity.
1) Encourage children to partake in a variety of physical activities. Variety is probably just as important as quantity.
2) Lead by example. Kids learn by exposure. On a personal note, I highly doubt that my kids would want to run and do triathlons if they hadn’t seen my wife and I running, biking and swimming. You don’t have to do an Ironman, but you should be doing something!
3) Make it fun for them. If they don’t enjoy it, they won’t do it. If it’s boring, they won’t want to do it. Find out what their friends participate in and see if they would like to as well. They will be able to spend time with their friends and car pooling to get to an organized sport helps everyone. Anecdotally, I see more sitting and inactivity in the past 10 years and attribute it to the advent of laptops, smartphones and tablets. I may be wrong.
The tone or message of this entire post should not be anything new to anyone reading. However, the way the message is delivered hopefully is. I say hopefully because SOMETHING eventually has to sink in.