'Decline in children's physical activities since COVID-19 pandemic'

'Decline in children's physical activities since COVID-19 pandemic'

Statistics indicate a sharp decline in children's and adolescents' physical activity levels since the pandemic started.

Children playing
Children playing / iStock

The coronavirus outbreak led to a lot of lifestyle changes. 

It even affected how children play and interact. At some levels, parks were closed and sporting activities were limited. 

Many children found themselves isolated at home to avoid contracting or spreading the virus. 

Although things have eased and the virus is now better managed, the impact that it has caused is still a concern. 

According to a recent study published in the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance, there has been a decline in physical activities for children and adolescents. 

It states that only one-third of children and adolescents globally were sufficiently physically active. Experts advise that children aged 6 to 17 years must do 60 minutes or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily. 

The report found that the coronavirus pandemic made matters worse. However, the good news is that children from Botswana, Ethiopia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe were marginally more physically active than children from the rest of the world.

According to the study, this could be because some children walk long distances to school. Unfortunately, even countries with improved performance need to increase the statistics of children meeting the required daily physical activity recommendations.

READ: Video of elderly shopper playing with water pistol inside grocery store

Benefits of physical activities in kids

Physical activity has numerous benefits for children and it is crucial for their development. 

Some of the benefits highlighted in Centers for Disease Control and Prevention include:

- Improve cardiorespiratory fitness

- Build strong bones and muscles.

- Control weight

- Reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression

- Reduce the risk of developing health conditions such as heart disease and cancer, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoporosis. and obesity.

READ: Gaming time has little effect on short-term mental health: study

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Image courtesy of iStock/ @Kalinovskiy

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