In the closing session of the Partnership for a Healthier America Summit yesterday in Washington, DC, First Lady Michelle Obama made an impassioned plea for play. We couldn’t have been more pleased to have her recognize the importance of play in fighting childhood obesity and keeping our kids fit and healthy and wanted to share a few highlights:
“Only one-quarter of kids play outside each day -- one-quarter of our kids play outside. And that’s compared to three-quarters of kids just a generation ago…. Many of you probably grew up just like I did….Back then, kids were constantly in motion. We rarely went more than a few hours without engaging in some kind of heart-pounding, sweat-inducing, active play.
And that’s an important word: play.
Back then, play meant physical activity. Sitting around watching TV didn’t count as playing. Lounging around the house with your friends was not playing. Back then, playing actually meant moving your body…
…We know we need to do things differently -- not just as parents, but as a society. We as a society need to redefine for our kids what play is. We as a society need to make physical activity a part of our kids’ daily lives again, and we need to do it in a way that is easy, affordable and fun -- not just for kids but for parents….”
We applaud Michelle Obama for her passion about play and hope you take her advice and grab your kids and go out and play today! Read the First Lady’s remarks in full.