Children are ‘bingeing’ online and not getting enough Physical Exercise

 

With children spending too much time online, the children’s commissioner has sent out a warning to parents that they must try to limit their children ‘bingeing’ on social media.

 

The children’s commissioner (Anne Longfield) has likened social media to ‘sweeties’ and the children’s time spent online to ‘junk food’. In an interview with the Observer, she said; “None of us as parents would want our children to eat junk food all the time – double cheeseburger, chips, every day, every meal. For those same reasons we shouldn’t want our children to do the same with their time online.”

Children spending too much time online

According to Ofcom, children spending too much time online, even more than watching TV. They found that children aged five-fifteen were spending fifteen hours a week online, a figure that has dramatically risen over recent years. Children as young as three and four are spending a shocking eight hours a week online! This figure was previously at approximately six hours 48 minutes a week.

 

While the time spent online has risen, time spent doing other activities has subsequently decreased. The average time spent reading has dropped to just half an hour a day, with physical activity time also being reduced.

 

Over exposure to screens can also leave children with a negative mental wellbeing. The BBC reports that moderate use of devices with screens can have a benefit on the mental wellbeing of young people, but only up to a certain time period.

 

Children spending too much time online via mobile devices, games consoles or watching TV, are increasingly likely to live a sedentary lifestyle. Public Health England believe that a sedentary lifestyle along with lots of time spent on computers or watching TV can lower their self esteem and heighten the chances of emotional distress such as anxiety or depression.

Children spending too much time online

It is understandable that some parents may find it hard to keep their children entertained during the summer holidays. Children can easily become bored during the long break and therefore parents can see sitting them in front of a screen for hours on end as a perfect cheap and easy solution.

 

The Bugs Group believe that this does not encourage children to remain active and stay fit and healthy during the holidays. Too much of a sedentary lifestyle as a child can help reinforce the habits as a part of their lifestyle when growing up. This can result in health issues such as obesity and increased risk of heart disease.

 

Parents should be sufficiently balancing screen time with other activities, like reading and physical activity as previously mentioned. Currently, the government recommends that children should undertake a minimum of one hours physical activity per day. In 2013, a staggering 70% of young people were not reaching this minimum figure of an hour’s physical activity a day. This is likely due to children spending too much time online. A good way to balance technology and activity is to balance the two with regular breaks throughout the day. Another possible way to limit internet/screen usage is to offer it as a reward for good behaviour or for performing other activities.

 

The Bugs Group run holiday camps in Solihull as well as weekend community classes throughout Birmingham. We look to ensure that all children remain active throughout the school holidays and most importantly enjoy physical activity. All our camps and classes are taught in a fun and engaging way to keep children engaged throughout the sessions.

FootieBugs Kids Football Holiday Camp Solihull

We make sure that all children reach the minimum of an hour’s physical activity and hopefully encourage them to carry on doing more when they go back home! All our sessions are focused on boosting children’s self esteem and confidence by allowing them to progress at their own pace and by giving them continuous encouragement – making them feel like a star.

 

To find out more about The Bugs Group’s Holiday Camps, please click here or to find out more about The Bugs Group’s Community Classes, please click here.

If you have any questions or require any further information, please call 0121 777 7792 or email info@thebugsgroup.com

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