Why Sports Should Be Part of Every Kid’s Life

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History of video game consoles (sixth generation)

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Sports. Some of us hate them, some of us love them. Some of us grew up as the team’s shining star. They woke up early on the weekends for football or baseball practice, or ran track until they puked. Then there were those of us who preferred to sit on the sidelines and watch. We relished the use of the snooze button and slept ’til noon every Saturday and then got up and turned on the TV or played video games. This trend has continued over the decades, with more and more kids turning on TVs instead of getting turned on to sports. The effects of this trend have been disturbing with childhood obesity rates on the rise, and far too many kids getting into trouble with drugs and violence. If sports were part of the lives of more young people, we might see the trend reverse.

Tackling Childhood Obesity Through Athletics

In most areas, some type of sport activity is available for kids of various age groups. While some children are eager to play sports, there are some children who simply do not show much interest in competing. However, in light of the obesity rates in children that continue to skyrocket, it just seems like common sense that some sort of physical activity should be part of every child’s life.

“Look at the obesity rate for kids right now. It’s terrible. Do I force my kids to do sports? YES! I don’t make them play a sport that they don’t like, but they will play a sport,” explained Dr. Kevin Berry, a Denver, Colorado dentist and father of three.

A High-tech World May Not Be The Healthiest For Children

Younger generations seem drawn to the latest and greatest technologies of today like moths to a flame. They spend hours of every day browsing the Internet, using their cell phones, gaming, and watching television. All of these activities require little to no physical movement, except maybe for kids playing with Microsoft Xbox’s new Kinect® system.

Parents need to step in to ensure that technology-based activities don’t monopolize the lives of today’s children. There is always time for sports, and if there isn’t time, time should be made for them. Sports allow children to be active and to spend time away from the devices that seem to be glued to their hands.

Studies have shown that the less active a child is, the higher chance he/she has of becoming overweight. The less kids move and the more downtime they have, the more likely they are to pack on pounds. Health agencies push for at least 60 minutes of physical activity for children each day and with sports, exercise becomes less mundane and much more exciting.

Playing to Learn

In addition to fighting the childhood obesity epidemic, sports are also important in helping children to grow and learn as high-functioning members of society. Sports allow a child to learn the importance of team work, dedication, proper social skills, the art of fair competition, and can even build a child’s self-esteem. As explained by Dr. Berry, “Sports give kids a sense of brotherhood; it keeps my son out of trouble. It reinforces the message of right and wrong that he gets at home. Even if it’s not competitive, it is a good use of their time.” Sports also keep parents involved in their child’s development.

Your child doesn’t need to be the local team’s star quarterback or the soccer team’s best goalie, but he should partake in some sort of sport. With such a variety of sporting activities available today, your kids should be able to find something that they can enjoy doing that doesn’t involve going online.

Ashley Page writes for Off-Topic Media. Dr. Kevin Berry is a general dentist who focuses on treating TMJ disorder and sleep apnea. He can be contacted at:

TMJ Therapy and Sleep Center of Colorado
8200 S. Quebec Street, A14
Centennial, Colorado 80112
303-800-7007

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  • Published: Jun 2nd, 2011
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How to Find Swim Leagues in your Area

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Now that the summer has arrived, it is time to get your little ones involved in the local or community swim league. Swim leagues are often associated by county, so if you want to get your kids enrolled in a swim league for the summer, be sure to look online, as most of the county websites will have information regarding swim leagues. Another way to find a swim league for your children is to visit your local or community public pool. More often than not, the public pool will have a swim league for children of different ages.

Adult swim leagues also exist. Your best bet to find a swim league for yourself is to research online. Similar to swimming leagues for kids, each county will provide information regarding adult swim leagues in which you can participate. Aquatic centers and health and wellness organizations like the YMCA may have adult leagues for you to join. If you live in a small district or county, it may be harder for you to find adult leagues, as most leagues will cater to more heavily populated cities and areas. Do not let that deter you, all it really means is you may have to drive farther than anticipated to find a swim league, but if you are passionate about swimming, then this should not bother you.

Be careful, as swimming injuries can occur, especially if you are older or have not participated in swimming activities in quite awhile. For children, common swimming injuries result in “swimmer’s ear” which is a term for a type of ear infection. For adults, joint and muscle pains can occur, usually around the shoulder, elbow, back and neck regions of the body. It is recommended that you consult a doctor to make sure you are in the right physical condition for a swim league, and if you are given the green light, then enjoy yourself to the max.

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  • Published: May 24th, 2011
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Helping Kids Enjoy Camping

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Booming technology definitely made our lives better but because of technology, things are not quite the same. There are changes that happened on our society which can make some of us regret why technology happened at all. One of these is the fact that people today don’t have so much time enjoying outdoors. The kids specially are the ones which are affected the most. Most kids acquired the same mentality that their parents show, that you can get it all in the comforts of your home. Actually, it’s not true. Camping for instance is still the best way for kids to enjoy outdoors. Without opening their hearts and minds to the fun and excitement camping can give them, kids will prefer being stuck at home forgetting everything about nature. Continue to read below to find out how you can encourage your kids to go camping.

If you are a parent who is in the process of introducing camping to your kids, the first step will be showing your kids that you are eager to go camping yourself. Everything starts with you. Make this a special event for you and your kids. When they see that you make a big deal of this trip, they will imbibe the same spirit and look forward to the trip as well. Have them help you plan and pack the gear you need. Also have them help set up the tent and inflate the air beds.

Involve your kids with all the details of your planning. Tell them one by one the activities that you have in mind when you get there. Think of the things that your kids love. Know the things that your kid loves to do indoors and find some way where you can bring those things outside. Does he love to play role playing games in PC? Why not play some hunting games when you go in the woods? Does he like to play with his friends online? You can make arrangements so that his friends can go with you on your camping trip. There are so many ways to make your child be interested on a camping trip. You just need to be creative when planning. In the process, you will learn a lot about your kids, things that you haven’t got the chance to see when both of you are busy with your stuff at home.

Before you go out to your camping trip, prepare your child for the different conditions out there in the camping area. You must explain to your child that he might experience some inconveniences while camping but all of that will be part of the experience. Show your child how enthusiastic you are despite all these inconveniences and show him all the positive things your family will be able to experience when you go camping together.

Tailgating Family Style

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2011 Biggest Little Tailgate Party

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While tailgating is generally viewed as a party before a sporting event that involves mass amounts of alcohol, grilling meat, and overall rowdy behavior, this is not necessarily the case in all situations. The truth of the matter is the tailgating can be a family friendly excursion under the right circumstances, as football stadiums want to make these events more accessible. Over the years, I have found a few different ways to make a tailgate party a good time for the entire family, so make sure that you are prepared before you head out in order to make this fun for all ages.

The first thing that you will need to do is locate a spot to tailgate that will not contain rowdy fans. Many stadiums now have family friendly tailgate sections, which will allow you to enjoy your time on the grounds without worrying about exposing your children to negative influences. These sections usually do not permit alcohol, making it a very family friendly option for you to discover. In some cases, these locations will provide entertainment for children to enjoy, which takes much of the pressure off of the parents in regards to planning. It is still a good idea to have some entertainment ideas planned, however, just in case everything does not work out with the stadium’s entertainment ideas.

Probably the most important aspect of a tailgate party is the food, so you will want to make sure that you have plenty of food options available for your party. Kids can be difficult to prepare for, but things like hot dogs and hamburgers usually go over well. The good thing about these foods is that adults will eat them too, so you will not have to come up with separate menus. Many stadiums will also have places to purchase food or even provide some free food before the game, so you might have a few different options from which to choose. Grabbing plenty of snacks before the game is also important, since you could be outside for hours. Try using the snack period to get some healthy foods into your kids, such as fruits and vegetables. Just because you are out tailgating does not mean that you have to throw nutritional values out the window.

Make sure that you keep all children hydrated throughout the day, especially if they are being active. Bring bottled water, as it provides more hydration than things like soda and juice. Of course, it is always fun for children to drink soda and juice, so keep these options open as well. Provide plenty of fluids for the children while they are eating, as this might be the only time that you can get them to sit still long enough to take these fluids.

Be absolutely certain that you research the policies regarding the section in which you end up before traveling to an area, as you could be in for a surprise otherwise. While most stadiums outlaw drinking on their property before games, many of these stadiums also do not enforce these rules. These same stadiums, however, will usually have family friendly section set aside for people who want these rules enforced. Look for these family friendly sections before you choose your location and do not assume that just because a stadium appears to discourage drinking onsite, that alcohol will not be present.
A few years back, I took my kids to a tailgate party and assumed that since I was on a dry campus, that no alcohol would be present. I was absolutely shocked when I reached the location and saw a full-blown party occurring before my very eyes. Needless to say, I left immediately and it ruined my tailgate experience for years to come. I have now figured out how these things work, however, so I avoid sections of the party that have not been labeled as family friendly.

Tailgating family style can be a very enjoyable experience because it keeps the family together and allows you to have a day out in the sun. By finding one that is located in a wholesome environment, you can save yourself a lot of trouble and will ensure that everyone in your family has a good time throughout the event.

Joyce Brister is a loving parent and blogger for the My Baby Blog.  Joyce loves writing about situations that parents are often faced with.  She would like for you to take a look at her Baby Bedding or her Arkansas Razorbacks Bar Stools.

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