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Teaching Kids to Get Moving: May 9, 2012

Diane Bauer and Barb Lawrence are moms on the move.

“I need to come and work out and feel better so that I have the energy to keep up with my kids,” says Bauer.

Between them they each have two tots ranging in age from one to four years old. The kids not only keep them running, they get a kick out of watching mom do it.

“Not only do my kids enjoy it while they’re here, they take it home with them. They will grab a band or grab a ball and just start doing the exercise moves that I didn’t even think they comprehended,” says Lawrence.

Pediatricians say parents who exercise are planting a seed of health in their own family.

“We recommend that children absolutely stay very active. Numerous national studies have shown that there is an increase rate of obesity if you’re also leading a sedentary lifestyle,” says Dr. Nancy Witham, a pediatrician with Lee Memorial Health System.

One in every ten children under the age of two is already overweight. Both ‘obese’ and ‘overweight’ are labels based purely on body mass index. Studies show if weight is not under control by age 11, kids are more likely to spend their life battling the bulge.

“Children who already have the overweight and or the obesity are at increased risk to carry both of those diagnoses through until their adult years,” says Dr. Witham.

The best example may be growing up in an active household.

“With the obesity epidemic that we have, it just shows them that it’s really important to stay healthy,” says Bauer.