Natural selection dictates that the individuals who are best equipped to adapt to the environment are more likely to survive than others. As man climbs to the top of the food chain, however, he succumbs to the luxury of modern living. Thus, younger generations are struggling to achieve even a short time of physical activity in a day.
News about the physical health of adolescents in Australia revealed that only 7% of girls are physically active, and only one in five teenage boys meets the minimum fitness standard of one hour of physical activity per day.
Emerging Health Crisis
These reports are evidence that the public is in a serious health crisis, as the younger Australians, who are supposed to be more active than the adults, now lead sedentary lives. Children and adolescents should do 60 minutes of physical activity each day, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Those who don’t are at risk of physical and mental illness.
Having a sedentary lifestyle exposes a person to the possibility of developing health problems and disability. With more young people turning to their mobile devices and TV screens regularly, a very small ratio engage in physical activity. Only 6% of 15 to 17-year-old girls meet the minimum daily requirement of physical activity and only 9% of 12 to 14-year olds do – which are even lower than the 20% of boys.
Combatting Health Risks with a Variety of Physical Activities
With only one life and one body, children and adolescents should be encouraged to participate in physical activities that are age-appropriate and enjoyable, to meet their daily dose of healthy movement.
Moderate aerobic activities, such as brisk walking, push-ups, and running, will help children and adolescents meet the standard. Offering a variety of physical activities to children and teenagers at home, in school or in the community will help them take on the habit of exercising and becoming more responsive to exercise.
Sixty minutes of physical exercise each day may be too much for most youngsters, but by doing simple activities like walking, lifting moderate weights, doing push-ups and sit-ups in the morning, they will be on their way to meeting the standard minimum requirement – and lowering their risk of getting sick.