South Shore YMCA Encourages Kids to Get out and Play on YMCA Healthy Kids Day, April 17

April 7, 2010

The YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee is encouraging kids and families to make physical activity a part of their daily routine in an effort to combat the growing childhood obesity epidemic. On YMCA Healthy Kids Day, kids and grown-ups will learn the importance of physical activity and active play through fun, engaging activities. The YMCA will also provide resources to help families get back to the basics of healthy living.


YMCA Healthy Kids Day is the nation’s largest health day for kids and families. The South Shore YMCA will provide resources to help educate grown-ups about making everyday healthy choices for their families. The event will be held on April 17, from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., at 3244 E. College Avenue, Cudahy and will feature activities ranging from obstacle courses and family aerobics, to swimming and healthy snack-making.


“The YMCA’s goal is to help kids find the joy in active play, and to help build a lifetime of love of being physically active,” said Tina Kreitlow, Center Director of the South Shore YMCA.


Studies show that kids who consistently engage in play are happier and healthier, and develop and enhance a variety of skills including motor skills, social skills, problem solving, and creativity. Experts recommend that kids engage in at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day, which often results in higher self-esteem and better academic performance.


“We know there are barriers to play,” said Kreitlow. “Some families do not have access to a park or playground, or physical education and recess may have been reduced in school. However, families can come to the Y, where they will be safe and enjoy being active together and with other families.”


The South Shore YMCA offers simple ways to help kids get more physical activity:


• Make physical activity a regular part of family time – the more active kids are the more likely they are to continue being physically active later in life.

• Allow kids to have unstructured playtime. All play is not created equal – kids need different types of play, including indoor and outdoor, active and inactive.

• Reintroduce your kid to the basics of active play: play hopscotch or basketball, jump rope, or enjoy games such as “Red Light, Green Light” and “Simon Says”.

• Play together as a family!


The YMCA of Metropolitan Milwaukee salutes Children's Hospital of Wisconsin for sponsoring YMCA Healthy Kids Day, which will take place at ten YMCA centers located throughout metro Milwaukee. The YMCA encourages families to take part in YMCA Healthy Kids Day to enjoy a day of active play and resources for healthier living. All activities are free and open to the public. For more information, call 414-571-9622.


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