ON PHYSICAL FITNESS FOR CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS

ON PHYSICAL FITNESS FOR CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS

090611-N-3271W-012 CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (June 11, 2009) Local area children test their fitness skills during a Junior Seal Fitness Challenge at Warner Park organized by the Navy and the Chattanooga Parks and Recreation Department. The event is in conjunction with Chattanooga Navy Week, one of 21 Navy Weeks planned across America in 2009. Navy Weeks are designed to show Americans the investment they have made in their Navy and increase awareness in cities that do not have a significant Navy presence. (U.S. Navy photo by Senior Chief Mass Communication Specialist Gary Ward/Released)

Key Guidelines for children and adolescents

Children and adolescents should do 60 minutes (1 hour) or more of physical activity daily.
Aerobic: Most of the 60 or more minutes a day should be either moderate- or vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, and should include vigorous-intensity physical activity at least 3 days a week.

Aerobic activities are those in which young people rhythmically move their large muscles. Running, hopping, skipping, jumping rope, swimming, dancing, and bicycling are all examples of aerobic activities. Aerobic activities increase cardiorespiratory fitness. Children often do activities in short bursts, which may not technically be aerobic activities. However, this document will also use the term aerobic to refer to these brief activities. Muscle-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include muscle-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.

Muscle-strengthening activities make muscles do more work than usual during activities of daily life. This is called "overload," and it strengthens the muscles. Muscle-trengthening
activities can be unstructured and part of play, such as playing on playground equipment, climbing trees, and playing tug-of- war. Or these activities can be structured, such as lifting weights or working with resistance bands. Bone-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include bone-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.

Bone-strengthening activities produce a force on the bones that promotes bone growth and strength. This force is commonly produced by impact with the ground. Running, jumping rope, basketball, tennis, and hopscotch are all examples of bone strengthening activities. As these examples illustrate, bone-strengthening activities can also be aerobic and muscle-strengthening.

It is important to encourage young people to participate in physical activities that are appropriate for their age, that are enjoyable, and that offer variety.

"Wacha niKwambie Uzima'"
May 2017 – Afya nzuri, maisha nzuri.
Focus on physical and mental wellness
© Dr. Sue Ma'Tsulla Murumba, Medical Doctor

Note:
Kindly note that this blog post is for information purposes only, for detailed and professional
advice please engage the services of a registered health or fitness specialist.