According to a report from a White House task force, childhood obesity rates have tripled in recent decades. And, Kentucky now has the third highest rate of childhood obesity in the nation.
Increased use of cars and video games, the reduction of physical education and availability of unhealthy food all contribute to these statistics. But, there are ways to help all children be physically active, improving their health as well as their academic, emotional and social well-being. Viewers explore the issue in "More Than Child's Play: Why Physical Activity Matters," part of KET's Be Well health initiative. The program aired Tuesday, Jan. 25 at 9/8 p.m. CT on KET.
“More Than Child's Play” closely examines the causes, the serious consequences and the possible solutions to children's sedentary lifestyles. The program visits Wellington Elementary, one of two new health and fitness magnet schools in Louisville, which has already attracted national attention for its innovative policies and cutting-edge fitness lab. Viewers also meet parents, students, teachers and administrators at Campbell Ridge Elementary School in Northern Kentucky, Hopkins Elementary in Somerset, Stanford Elementary School and Lexington's Ashland Elementary, all of which are finding exciting new ways to make physical activity a priority.
The program also looks at the role of community initiatives and policy changes in creating more opportunities for children to be physically active. Faith-based organizations like The Kings Center in Frankfort, community efforts like Paducah's “Bikes on Broadway,” and statewide advocacy groups like the Partnership for a Fit Kentucky, among others, all participate in keeping Kentucky's kids moving, hopefully producing a lifelong habit of activity that could move the needle on childhood obesity.
“More than Child's Play: Why Physical Activity Matters,” part of KET's Be Well Kentucky health initiative, is a KET production, produced by Laura Krueger. This KET special report is funded in part by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky.