We’re a local family. We live in a row home that sits on a fairly busy street. We have a small patio out back. We take advantage of the playgrounds at Cionne and Hackett – “parkour” at Hackett is a favorite! We bike ride maybe 2-3 times a month to Penn Treaty park if we are lucky. My 7 year old twins attend a charter school. They have a ballet class as their gym requirement once a week and do not have recess.
“When I was their age” I lived in the suburbs, had gym multiple times a week, and recess every single day. Screen time didn’t exist, and I feel like we had much less homework. Evenings and weekends were freed up for running around, playing and being active. We played sports once or twice a week (I took ballet) but the majority of our exercise came from walking to school, monkey bars, bikes and games of kick ball and tag.
Life is different for our kids and we know it.
80% of the parents who come in to talk to me about the youth program are concerned that their kids aren’t active enough. They’re getting too comfortable and are unmotivated from sitting around and playing on their devices. Many of the kids have never found a sport that clicked for them, and they had few other options. So they sit. Their fitness and health suffer and, many times, so does their confidence.
The Departments of Health and Human Services frames it up for us with in the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, second edition. They advise, “Children and adolescents ages 6 through 17 years should do 60 minutes (1 hour) or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily”. They go on to say that that activity should include aerobic activity, as well as muscle and bone strengthening activities.
My kids take the fitness classes at Renaissance Youth as one of their 7 hours of recommended hours of exercise per week. The program exposes them to a variety of functional movement skills: running, jumping, climbing, throwing, catching, kicking, landing, spinning, body rolling and stepping to name a few. We are training their primal movement patterns like pushing, pulling, squatting and hinging so that not only are they moving, but they are moving well. We’re also having FUN. It might not seem important, but it is. Fitness should be fun – it should be something they look forward to long into adulthood.
We are building their physical literacy, which is their ability to interact with any environment. It’s basis of athleticism which will increase their capacity and inspiration to move through life with freedom and fearlessness.
I started Renaissance Youth for my kids, and for yours. I’ll share the many reasons why we have made CrossFit a part of their life. Some, like today’s will be obvious. But others might surprise you.