According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), children and teens should be physically active for at least 60 minutes on most, if not all, days of the week. This recommendation states that the 60 minutes may be accrued in “smaller chunks” of time throughout the day (HHS 2010). However, Troiano et al. (2008) report that only 8% of youth aged 12–19 years are active for a full 60 minutes per day.
I thoroughly enjoyed Zoey Trap’s article “Pilates: Tools for Teen Athletes” in IDEA Fitness Journal [Inner IDEA, November–December 2010]. I’ve always been an advocate of using the principles of Pilates not only literally, but figuratively, as metaphors for life. I applaud her for commencing with the teen market.
Dr. Muth is a pediatrician, registered dietitian and board-certified specialist in sports dietetics (CSSD). Muth also serves as an ACE Senior Fitness Consultant and subject matter expert, regularly contributing to ACE blogs and to the ACE Certified News monthly newsletter. Her first book, Eat Your Vegetables and Other Mistakes Parents Make: Redefining How to Raise Healthy Eaters, was published by Healthy Learning in May 2012.
ACE: As a registered dietitian and pediatrician, what would you say is the biggest challenge we face in overcoming the obesity epidemic?
When 18-year-old K. attended an Insight Meditation Teen Retreat, she was seeking answers, reaching for help, trying to make sense of her pain and suffering. A college-bound Caucasian student from a comfortable middle-class suburban setting, K. had begun self-harming. Knowing it was wrong and starving for guidance, she immersed herself in an intensive 4-day residential mindfulness meditation program.
As obesity continues to maintain a stranglehold on the teenage population, experts search for solutions to the potentially fatal disease. When it comes to exercise, a combination of cardiovascular and strength training is best, according to researchers from São Paulo.
Many young athletes dream of earning a scholarship to play their sport of choice at a reputable college or university. To realize that dream, they will often train extensively. Recent research found that hard training while young may lead to significant physical problems later in life.
The top titans of exercise—resistance exercise and cardiovascular exercise—continue to duke it out for the title of best fitness protocol. When it comes to obese girls, researchers believe they have a champion: cardio.
To determine this outcome, the researchers recruited 44 obese girls, aged 12–18, and assigned them to RE, CE or a nonexercise control group for 3 months. Measures included body weight, waist circumference, oral glucose, insulin sensitivity, body fat, cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular fitness and more.
Here is another reason to encourage children to maintain a healthy weight: According to a Kaiser Permanente Southern California study, children who are overweight or obese are at significant risk for developing hyper- tension.
Childhood obesity, inactivity and poor food choices are taking a toll on today’s youth. In some cases, structured exercise is encouraged for weight management. Unfortunately, this approach doesn’t seem to be working.
The rates of overweight and obesity among kids continue to climb. Food choices and inactivity are considered major culprits. Are electronic devices also to blame?
Scientists from the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta have linked use of electronic devices, poor sleep patterns and obesity among Canadian 5th graders. The researchers surveyed sleep habits, food intake, physical activity levels, height and weight measurements, and nighttime use of electronic devices among 3,398 children.