Health Check: Getting kids moving during summer break
Physical fitness is important for any age group, and nearly every single day, about 100 children make their way to the Life Time Fitness in Plymouth for the summer camp program.

"We have educational and fitness-based classes for the kids, just to get them moving, get their heart-rate pumping, blood flowing for them," said Kelsey Resch, the kids manager at Life time. "And use up some of that extra energy that maybe wasn't used during school."

Resch says children need about 60 minutes of physical activity every day, and they're not always getting it in school.

"A lot of the public school systems, or any school system in general, they get about a hundred minutes a week," Resch said.

As a result, parents can play a huge role in teaching their kids about the benefits of being active.

"Both my husband and I are very active, and just kind of helping lead by example," said Andrea Mattila, a Plymouth resident.

Mattila comes to Life Time about four to five times a week, and each time she does, she brings along her kids, where they engage in various active endeavors.

"Even though they don't understand what I'm doing upstairs, they still understand, 'hey everybody's moving, you feel good.' You feel better when you move," Mattila said.

Getting kids to move is an even greater challenge these days with the number of electronic distractions available to them.

"You've got iPads, you've got phones, you got everything -- every reason to sit still," Mattila said. "So I think it is more of a challenge, if they're not, especially, in organized sports."

Introducing children to organized sports -- or at least some form of organized physical activity -- is the primary focus of this summer camp.

"That's exactly what we try and do here at Life Time, is trying to build those interests with the kids, whether it's getting their foot wet in a martial arts program, or finding out that that they really love to go to a dance class or a zumba class, things like that," Resch said.

The goal is that the instructors in Plymouth can help the kids learn the value of physical fitness, so that the desire to stay active doesn't disappear when they leave the building.

"It's very doable," Mattila said. "And this is kind of the way of life and how it should be."

The Life Time Fitness summer camp is taking registrations throughout the entire summer.

Delane Cleveland

July 18, 2017


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