It’s May! The weather is improving, school is almost out, and it is becoming appealing to be outside again. It is also National Physical Fitness and Sports Month. This makes May a great time to revisit fitness and activity goals. Our New Year’s resolutions are long behind us. Some of us remain committed to our fitness goals, while others have fallen off. Either way, now is a great time to commit to increased activity in the improving weather. Why shoulder fitness be a priority? Physical activity is important for everyone, no matter what the age.
For children and adolescents – Physical activity can improve muscular fitness, bone health, and heart health. For children, this can be as easy as riding bikes, swimming at the local pool, or impromptu games of tag, kickball, baseball or basketball. Getting children off of their electronic devices and outside in the fresh air is imperative not only to their fitness goals, but their social skills as well.
Adults – Physical activity can lower the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer. Playing with your children at the playground, family bike rides, or walks can help to improve physical fitness, as well as strengthening family bonds.
Older adults – Physical activity can lower the risk of falls and improve cognitive functioning (like learning and judgment skills). After dinner walks, or trips to a forest preserve or arboretum, as well as visits to the local pools, are excellent ways improve fitness without it feeling like work. Exercise also helps to improve moods and sleep.
There are plenty of ways to incorporate exercise into your day without it feeling like a chore, so get out there with your families and friends and get active!!
Cathy Malooly, PT, MPT
Burr Ridge, IL