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Urban kids unhealthy
Published on 14 Nov. 2010 11:37 PM IST
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November 14 is Children’s Day but it is not all good news. A recent study suggests that one in every three children below 10 years of age is either underweight or overweight.
Most of the children belonging to urban areas are addicted to video games and not interested in going out to play. Young school children in mid-level to elite private schools in urban India are unfit and unhealthy like never before. An independent survey covering over 4000 children across 15 cities says one in three students is overweight or malnourished.
“Children today don’t play outside and 80 per cent of them talk about their playtime as their play station or computer time. There is no play time as in running and playing,” says Deen’s Academy Principal Shanthi Menon.
Children aged 5 to 10 were assessed on co-ordination, flexibility and agility. While many of them can score a perfect 90 in Maths and Science, at least one-third couldn’t easily sit and stretch, swing and jump or even throw.
The verdict is clear: unhealthy kids grow up to unhealthy adults.
“It’s a combination of not having enough time to play and enough space to play. There is parental lack of attention, lack of willingness and lack of role-models. If I want my child to be fit, I can’t be watching TV all day. I need to do something about it,” says EduSports MD Saumil Majumdar.
It’s an unquestioned fact that many of our children are not fit enough, what with pizza snacking and the fact that many schools don’t have large playgrounds. But it is the first time that a scientific assessment has been done and perhaps it’s time to think beyond exams.

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