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Trackback was created to this entry: [...]The annual report card on physical activity was released by the Active Healthy Kids Canada and reported in the Globe and Mail on April 26th and the results are alarming. My question is where did childhood fitness go? Read on and see how it’s gone to the same place their parent's health and fitness went….straight to the sofa with a bag of chips and a couple beers to watch the big screen TV. Unfortunately our young people are seeing the same degenerative diseases constant with their parents poor lifestyles, only decades sooner![...]

Robert Armstrong

So true Ron. What we took for granted as kids was actually great for our health.


You're right, Rob. When we were kids, the only time we spent indoors was for homework, chores, or during a really rainy day. Otherwise, we would be outdoors playing touch football at St. Paul's, street hockey, playing "guns" over at the forest, practice golf in our backyard, chasing 2x4s down Roseland Creek or walking/biking all over Burlington. Burlington Transit used school buses and wasn't always on time. My first job was caddying over at the Burlington Golf & Country Club when I was 13 years old. It was at least an 8 kilometer round trip. I biked everyday from our home to the club and back on a second-hand 3-speed Eaton's Glider bicycle that needed some sort of repairs almost every night. No helmet, no fancy gear. Maybe a pant clip once in awhile. I remember riding by myself from Waterloo to Burlington and back in one day in my first year at Waterloo. Again, no helmet. Just the other day, I managed to hike 8 kms. on the Bruce Trail in the Dundas Valley with severe rheumatoid arthritis in less than 2 hours. My joints did not like it and they still don't. But, the rest of my body did. Exercise. I can still do it now because I did it back then. I played organized hockey until I was 14. Phys Ed in school was not a option. It was mandatory. You got docked marks if you missed attendance. The only time I ever saw a really obese kid was either in a wheelchair or they got a parent's note to permanently miss gym. There was peer pressure though. You were considered a wimp if you permanently missed gym. I walked to and from school everyday from kindergarten through high school to university. The walk usually averaged about 2 kms. one way. But, most of my exercise came from playing outside after school. We had to use our imaginations to entertain ourselves. We had no computers, cell phones, Iphones, Ipods, PSPs, PS3, Xboxes, Nintendo or Wii. I watched maybe an hour of television a day if I was lucky. And it was usually what my parents were watching. We only had one colour TV set. We had two phones. But, only one outside line and it was shared by the whole family. Until the Skyway Plaza and the Burlington Mall were built, we only had one movie theatre in town, the Roxy. If you wanted to see a good movie, you had to take the bus to Hamilton. The kids today should consider themselves lucky to have so many distractions so readily available. But, at what cost. The cost is playing and exercising outdoors. Their bodies will pay for it when they reach my age (58). That is, if they reach my age.

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