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08:24 AM

American Heart Association: How to keep kids active while learning from home – and why that's vital

When schools close to protect families from the coronavirus, the main worry for many parents might be the lost learning. But for students who end up staying indoors and staring at phones and monitors most of the day, there could be health costs, too.

If you're a kid who has lost access to school, you've also lost recess and all the other opportunities for moving around during a school day. You've lost physical education classes and sports teams.

Families can find ways to cope, said Dr. Geetha Raghuveer, a pediatric cardiologist at Children's Mercy in Kansas City, Missouri. But it starts with knowing how vital it is for a child to stay physically active.

According to a 2020 report in Circulation written by an American Heart Association panel Raghuveer led, about 60% of U.S. youth have a less-than-healthy level of cardiorespiratory fitness.

The effects of low fitness are multifaceted, she said. "It's physical, it's cardiac, it's mental, it's academic, it's long term, it's short term."

"It helps a lot if the family can engage in physical fitness activities as a family as opposed to just telling the kid to go out and do something," Raghuveer said.




Read the full story via the American Heart Association

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