The Cooper Institute

Founded in 1970 by the "Father of Aerobics"
Kenneth H. Cooper MD, MPH


Turn It Off to Burn It Off

Posted in
Move more

Monday, Apr 27, 2009

Worried about your children gaining too much weight?

Have difficulty finding time to fit physical activity into your hectic life?

Want to spend more time doing things as a family?

There’s a single solution to all these challenges  – click off the television and move more.  According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, children ages 6-18 spend over three hours a day watching television.  As you can see from the graph at the top of this blog, children also spend a lot of time in front of other screens playing video games and using the computer.  But still, TV watching is their biggest active living time robber. 

Studies have shown a strong link between TV time and increased risk of becoming overweight or obese in children.  And excess TV time is not just a problem for your kids.  As we blogged earlier, increasing television time was associated with increased risk for obesity and diabetes in adults.  Being sedentary and eating high calorie snacks in front of the tube are the likely culprits to the negative health impacts of watching too much television.

So, let’s see.  Too much time watching TV and not enough time being physically active.  Anyone else see a possible “kill two birds with one stone” solution?  That would be turn off the TV and burn off some calories. 

Need help changing this sedentary habit?

This past week was Turn of the TV week.  Don’t worry. If you missed the official week, you can designate any week in the future as the “_______________”-family Turn It Off week.  Here’s a link to ways you can wean the family from the screen.  Plus, you can start now to plan for September’s Turnoff Week.

Rarely are there simple solutions to complex challenges.  When it comes to being sedentary and not burning enough calories, turning of the television can be a one-click fix.  Share how your will family exhange TV time for physical activity time?