One in four teens report meeting the recommended one hour or more of daily physical activity, according to a survey by the Center of Disease Control and Prevention. Northwest YMCA program director, Marilyn Gyselinck, is not surprised by these numbers.
“No, especially today with video games and electronics and movies an all of that. It is very tempting to do anything but get up the couch and do something active,” said Gyselinck.
There is hope for this statistic to change. Tampa’s YMCA offers programs tailored to teen’s needs and interests. One program, Leaders Club, focuses on empowerment through fitness. Many of them have included physical activity to their daily routine.
“When I am not in the club or when we are not meeting. Generally, I am less motivated to go work out,” said Joshua Heiman, a Leader in the program. “But then when I come here, I feel obligated to show up and then we work out anyway. So, that helps me stay active and stay motivated.”
Not only are they staying motivated, they are being an example and spreading the word about this health focus fitness clubs.
“On my case, you should come and check this out and then they tell their friends and their friends tell their friends,” said Ciera Alonso, a Leader in the club. “And that’s how we grew from like six to sixty”.
The teens in the Leaders Club will be organizing the second annual 5k marathon to promote awareness of the dangers of obesity and become examples of teen active living.