Get those kids outside to play

  • Blog Post by: Colleen Stoxen
  • April 3, 2012 - 11:56 AM

Playing outside might be one of the fondest childhood memories for most adults, but researchers now say that they're not carrying on the tradition for their kids.

According to a new study published in the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine, parents just aren't taking their kids, especially young girls, outdoors to participate in physical activities.

The study looked at 8,950 children and researchers asked their parents to report their child's outdoor playtime. Researchers discovered only 51 percent of children went outside to walk or play once a day with either parent.

Boys were also more likely to be taken outside than girls: Preschool girls were 16 percent less likely to be taken outdoors.

"One of the main points is that even though many of us may assume that young children spend some time outdoors every day, there's considerable room for improvement in how often parents take their children outside to play," study author Dr. Pooja Tandon, a pediatrician and researcher with the Seattle Children's Research Institute, told HeathDay.

Forty-two percent of children who did not have a regular child care arrangement besides their parents - meaning day care or some other system that would typically give them outdoor time - did not play outside. After cancelling out other sedentary-related factors including hours of television viewed, parents' marital status, household income or parental perceptions of neighborhood safety, the results still remained about the same. Mothers were more likely to supervise their children at play than fathers, the study found.

Read more from CBS News.

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