‘Global epidemic’ of childhood inactivity
Four in five 11- to 17-year-olds around the world are not taking enough physical exercise, according to the first such analysis.
The World Health Organization says children’s health is being damaged as well as their brain development and social skills.
It says failing to take the recommended hour a day of exercise is a universal problem in rich and poor countries.
Boys were more active than girls in all but four of the 146 countries studied.
This new epidemic is probably the result of banning children from playing games anywhere except in designated ‘playgrounds’. My experience of childhood was that we ran around a lot, usually playing games like football. We only stopped running around madly when school rules forbade us from running.
We had lots and lots of school rules. No running. No talking. No hands in pockets. And, of course, no smoking. There was never any reason given for any of these rules, as far as I could see. They were all completely arbitrary restrictions. Their only shared characteristic was that they stopped you doing something you wanted to do (not that I had any interest in smoking when I was at school, except to break school rules for the sake of breaking them).
Now, of course, the whole world has become a school, and we have all been made children again, and subjected to the tyranny of arbitrary school rules – like no smoking. I wonder when they’ll bring in the No Hands In Pockets rule?
Anyway, I hope this new epidemic isn’t catching. Or that it’s restricted to chiiiiildren. I’m thoroughly sick of chiiiiildren.