School’s out for summer, and that means no physical education classes and no regular exercise for most students. While simply relaxing over summer vacation may sound like more fun than working out, it’s important for kids to keep up their physical activity year-round.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that young people age 6–17 participate in at least 60 minutes of physical activity daily. Exercise helps improve strength and endurance, builds healthy bones and muscles, helps control weight, reduces anxiety and stress, and increases self-esteem.
UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind is dedicated to fighting childhood obesity and helping students develop healthy fitness habits that will last a lifetime. The largest PE-focused organization in the country, UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind installs state-of-the-art fitness centers in underfunded middle and high schools and provides PE teachers with a unique curriculum focused on mastering basic physical tasks.
“I always encourage students to keep active in the summer,” says Martin Wurmlinger, a PE teacher at Irving STEAM Magnet Middle School in Los Angeles, who's affiliated with the UCLA program. ”I stress just getting out and finding an activity that keeps them moving and raises heart rate levels.”
PE teachers in the program came up with these exercise tips for kids (and adults) that can be done anywhere any time:
“I encourage students to do physical fitness activities with friends or family,” adds Wurmlinger.”That’s usually more fun and a great motivator.”
For more information on UCLA Health Sound Body Sound Mind, visit www.uclahealth.org/soundbodysoundmind.