Unstrap your feedbag (you’ll get that later) and lets take straight about the state of fiutness with ourselves and our children. Lets put away all of the polite and nice beating around the bush for one minute.
We have become a sluggish culture of over-fat people who don’t exercise, eat too much and use our stunted breath to complain about how horrible we feel. Not just you, me too. I’m not above having a Snickers and a coke and calling it a meal, I am a product of my environment. I’m not happy about it, but at least I can admit it. Watch this: remember it’s a joke, but it’s funny because it has the sting of truth in it. [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sw_1CIwwEIA]
My question is: We may live this way, but is this what we want for our children? It dawned on me yesterday when I was talking to a staff member about how her son wakes her up every morning to see if she will go out and run with him. He has started running because it makes him feel better. I admitted, that when I can find the time to run, I always have a more productive day, feel better and sleep great. So why can’t I find the time to run? Why does she not want to get out of bed to join her son? (Actually I know why, speaking for most of us, a 5:45AM wake up call is going to go unanswered unless it comes from a drill Sargent).
The solution for us is all about will power and priorities. Making exercise a priority is the key. We all had gym class when we were younger and as we grew up we “de-prioritized” physical exercise for any multitude of reasons. Some parents have re-instituted a “workout” during the day as a moment of peace and “me time”. Great idea. It’s a start. A coaching friend, recently related to me, his trip to Italy. He noticed that when Italians (in country) eat that they sit. They enjoy the meal and treat it as an event. They don’t eat and drive, eat and walk, or eat and work. On the average, an Italian citizen is thinner than the average American. We fool ourselves into thinking that whatever we have to do is so important, that it cannot be put off while we slow ourselves down for a meal (and maybe a little family time, that couldn’t hurt either). There is very little that is so important that it cannot wait. Our children must also become a priority under the heading of fitness. We MUST teach them, by word AND deed, that being fit is a priority and will lead to productivity, better health and a happier life.
At Gymfinity we started the G Force Mobile Gymnastics and Fitness program that comes to schools and day cares to offer gymnastics and fitness based games to kids in their schools. We were motivated by headlines like: Average child gets less than 15 minutes of physical activity a day. …obesity passes smoking as the top killer….30% of America’s youth are considered “overweight.” …more than 60% of today’s kids DO NOT participate in organized activity outside of school. Arghhhh! We had to do something. We had a great program with physical benefits here at the gym, but what about those kids who couldn’t be brought here? How could we reach them? We packed up some equipment, stuffed it into a truck, along with a trained instructor and sent it to the schools. The program is a great success.
Now we have redeveloped our in house fitness program. We are (starting in September) offering our new “Physio-Fit” program for kids. It will have 3 different levels of program from “Beginner” to “Trainer” to “Athlete” as we believe that everyone can benefit from this program. We focused the curriculum on Strength in a fun way, Flexibility, Cardio Fitness and Nutrition. We will keep group numbers a little lower to allow more “personal training” and we are keeping the tuition low to allow for affordability for every family.
If kids already take a gymnastics or tumbling class they can add on the Physio-Fit class for $42 a month. We really believe in our program and we know it will make a difference in the lives of many kids and families. We know that parents need to have an option to offer their kids, one that will be a fun way to fall in love with being fit and feeling good, and that’s our mission with Physio-Fit. We want to show kids that it’s fun AND when we make exercise a priority, we feel good. Despite our own hectic lives, the lives of eat and run, candy bar meals and multi-over-tasking we can have something that gives our kids a chance for something better.
The Buddhists have a saying “When eating, just eat. When sitting, just sit.” I think of that often while I’m driving home after work with a burger in one hand, my cell phone in the other, talking about my work day and rushing to tuck my boys into bed. At that time the “feed-bag” idea sounds plausible, but maybe I can make some better choices, it’s nice to have options. Maybe prioritizing my tasks and making my intention to plant the seed for good health in my kids, my boys will have a chance at that something better.