Posts Tagged ‘physical education’

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ING gets kids running for their lives

April 14, 2009

A growing epidemic

Parents, beware: a dangerous epidemic is sweeping our nation’s youth. Your child may be at risk of life-threatening complications, psychological problems and decreased quality of life. More than 15 percent of American children are estimated to have the disease, and the number is growing at an alarming rate. What is this frightening condition? Childhood obesity.

Sedentary lifestyles and poor nutrition have tripled youth obesity levels.

Sedentary lifestyles and poor nutrition have tripled youth obesity levels.

According to the American Obesity Association, the number of obese children has more than tripled over the last three decades. At least 30 percent of kids are clinically overweight and are also subject to the health problems associated with obesity. Many doctors attribute the rapid increase in overweight and obese children to sedentary lifestyles accompanied by high-calorie, low-nutrient snacks.

With so much passive entertainment- whether it’s television, the computer or video games — at their fingertips, many kids choose to spend time sitting and snacking. This lifestyle is very different than the “good old days” when parents sent their children to play outside regularly. Today’s parents feel their children are safer inside, but the lack of physical activity among American children is putting their health in danger.

Physical problems obese children may develop include:

  • joint pain
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • arthritis
  • asthma
  • sleep apnea
  • high blood pressure
  • high cholesterol

Overweight and obese children are also at increased risk of depression, low self-esteem and other psychological issues.

Banking on our kids’ health

Recent events have put an unflattering spotlight on the American banking industry. However, some banks are maintaining their reputations through community programs and philanthropic contributions. ING Group is a global institution that offers banking, investments, life insurance and retirement services to more than 85 million clients around the world. The institution is teaming up with the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) to get kids moving and improve their health.

ING Run for Something Better teaches kids the benefits of exercise.

Run for Something Better teaches kids the benefits of exercise.

ING Run for Something Better encourages kids to make healthy lifestyle choices through free community and school-based running programs. ING instituted the campaign to give all children access to exercise and health education and to combat childhood obesity due to sedentary lifestyles.

ING has contributed more than$2.5 million in grants to fund running programs, and more than 40,000 students have participated in Run for Something Better since 2003.

School scholarships for exercise

The NASPE recognized ING’s effort to improve children’s lifestyles, and partnered with ING to create an awards program for schools hoping to institute running programs. TheĀ  program will award 50 schools $2,000 grants to establish or expand their runningĀ  programs. Any public school may apply for a grant to fund a running program that targets fifth- through eighth-graders for a minimum of eight weeks.

“NASPE is thrilled to partner with ING Run for Something Better to help children get more physically active,” NASPE President Fran Cleland said. “Quality physical activity programs introduce children to the joys of movement and are truly the beginning of health care reform.”

Schools will receive grants to implement exercise programs.

Schools will receive $2,000 grants to implement exercise programs.

The ING Run for Something More program is helping children across America adopt healthy habits that may lower their chances of becoming overweight or obese. Teaching children the benefits of exercise and proper nutrition is vital to their well-being, and campaigns like Run for Something Better give all kids a chance to learn to make wise lifestyle choices.

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