Childhood obesity is an epidemic in America. While I wish I could say that this wasn’t true and that all kids will shoot up and fill out, this isn’t always true. While there are many reasons for this unfortunate situation, one of the main problems that faces our children is a lack of physical activity, both inside and outside of schools. With schools focusing more and more on the vast amounts of information our children need to keep up with the rest of the world, it can become difficult for recess and gym class to cater to their needs, especially as they grow into middle school and above. Here in Gaston County, we want to help our children fight childhood obesity and keep themselves healthy into and through adulthood.

The habits that we learn as children generally stay with us through our adult lives unless we actively work to change them. This means that if you and your child exercise on a regular basis, they likely will continue this activity even after they have gone to college and/or moved out of your house. While it may be difficult and extremely tiring to get your kid up and out of the house to exercise, studies have shown that getting your kids active is beneficial to both of you. This may be through your exercising as well, or by simply tiring them out so you can sleep through the night as they do the same.

Our greenways are a perfect area to get your kids to exercise. One trick many parents use is creating games. This may be a scavenger hunt where their children need to bring items back, trying to find and identify different animals, or even something traditional like tag or hide and seek. Being outside helps kids to strengthen their immune system, get a good amount of oxygen, and helps their vitamin D levels due to sunlight absorption. Getting out and playing with your child is something that we will always encourage, no matter what your reasoning is. We think that it’s a wonderful thing to see people of all ages enjoying our specially designed greenways and hope that the love you instill in them will last their whole life through. Who knows, maybe your child will design and develop greenways when they get older just like us.