PARENTS are being urged to take an active role in making sure their children –and themselves – are fit and healthy.
It’s part of the Scottish Government’s TakeLife On, drive which says children should get 60 minutes of activity every day.
A Holyrood spokesman said: “There are lots of easy ways to get off the couch and get active, which can in turn help you encourage your kids to get the recommended activity they need every day. The good news is that you don’t have to do this all in one go, activity can be split into achievable 10 minute bursts to make it easier to fit into everyday life.
“Getting active doesn’t need to be costly - you don’t need a gym membership or a professional to coach you.”
Experts recommend activities as simple as using the stairs instead of a lift, taking walk, strolling in the park – and even closing the curtains, turning up the music and having a dance.
David White, the Scottish Government physical activity champion explained: “Only 39 per cent of adults in Scotland are currently meeting the recommended physical activity levels, but getting active shouldn’t be viewed as a chore. It can be great fun and an opportunity to try something different or to meet new people.
“Finding something you enjoy doing will mean you’re more likely to stick to it. This doesn’t need to be costly – taking a walk or a trip to the swimming pool with family or friends are great ways to get going. You’ll feel better today, and reap the benefits for years to come.”
The government says there is strong scientific evidence that physical activity and a healthier diet can protect against many of Scotland’s leading chronic diseases.
The spokesman said: “Heart disease is currently Scotland’s biggest cause of death but a diet high in fruit, vegetables and fibre, and low in salt and fat can be a massive step towards reducing your risk of developing it. Being physically active keeps the heart healthy and makes you look and feel great. Half of all cancers could be prevented by lifestyle changes too.”