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Even if the child is eager to train in PE lessons, it is still worth providing him with additional physical activities. Check why it is so important and how to choose the best sports discipline for your child.

Daily physical activity of a child is important not only for a good figure. It also affects he alth and proper mental development. It can help with learning, because the brain oxygenated during sports works better, thanks to which it is easier for the child to concentrate on learning - as confirmed by research results, recently published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

By increasing the blood flow to the brain, exercise increases the levels of norepinephrine and endorphins, which in turn increases the levels of growth factors that stimulate the formation of new nerve cells and connections between them.

Research shows, however, that from 50 to 70 percent children and adolescents do not exercise enough - their activity is limited only to the obligatory PE exercises. Sometimes this is also missing if the child does not like PE lessons or is exempt from it. However, this is not a hopeless situation - it is worth providing the child with the opportunity to practice a sports discipline that he will like. At the same time, it is easier to encourage a child to move when he convinces himself to some sport. A good motivating factor is not only the child's interests, but also the current fashion among peers to practice specific disciplines.

Which sports are especially recommended for children?

It is good if the sport chosen by the child harmoniously develops the entire figure (such as swimming, horse riding, volleyball, martial arts of the East or sports acrobatics). Practicing some disciplines - e.g. tennis, handball or other sports where one part of the body is used more intensively than the other - is worth consulting with an orthopedist. Nearly 90 percent Polish children have posture defects, which can be aggravated if the child has an incorrectly selected sports discipline.

An obese child should exercise every day!

Bad weather is no reason to give up physical activity - twenty minutes of simple exercise a day is enough to lose weight. It is important that they are performed systematically. In the case of high obesity, the exercise program should be agreed with a specialist, because some exercises (e.g.Skipping ropes) are then not recommended, as they can cause joint damage.

What exactly is the danger of a child who weighs too much?

The World He alth Organization warns that childhood obesity is now an epidemic. About 20 percent children weigh too much, a third of that number is obese. Experts predict that the number of overweight children in Europe will increase by over one million a year. On the list of countries where the number of teenagers with excess body weight is the fastest, Poland takes the infamous first place. What does too much weight result? First of all, serious he alth problems. A recent study by doctors at the British Columbia Children's Hospital in Canada shows that the blood vessels of obese children are as inflexible as those of adults with cardiovascular disease. Aortic stiffness in adults can cause a heart attack, so experts speculate that it may also be the same in teenagers.

Obese children also suffer from the so-called metabolic syndrome, i.e. ailments related to abnormal metabolism such as atherosclerosis or hypertension. Research shows that people who weighed too much in childhood are more likely to develop heart and circulatory system diseases in their adulthood.

Too much adipose tissue increases the risk of cancer, impairs the lipid metabolism, and also impairs the body's tolerance to glucose - thus it is conducive to the development of type 2 diabetes, formerly occurring only among adults. Excessive weight is also an overload of the osteoarticular system, leading to irreversible changes in the knee and hip joints. It is impossible to ignore the effects on the psyche - overweight and obesity cause isolation from peers, cause depression, and disturb self-esteem.

Every fifth student misses PE


How many times a week should a child play sports?

The fact that long sitting in front of the TV or playing on the computer has a bad effect on the body has been known for a long time. It is also known that for hours spent standing still in front of the screen, children pay with fatigue, reluctance to mental effort, overweight and, more often, obesity. The results of the research clearly prove that, apart from diet, physical activity is the most effective in the fight against excess body fat. We know your child should exercise regularly. But what does it actually mean and how do you provide your child with an appropriate amount of exercise for his age? The answers to these questions will be provided by the pyramid of physical activity, developed by the experts of the "Keep your balance" program, implemented under the Swiss-Polish ProgramCollaboration.

Every day the child should climb the stairs, swing, run with the dog, walk. 3-5 times a week, the child should play football, ride a bike, scooter, etc. (optional). It is recommended that you go to additional sports activities (swimming, dancing, karate etc.) 2.3 times a week. And most of all, reduce passive TV viewing.

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