We all know the importance of eating healthy food and living an active lifestyle. We also know those habits can be hard to keep - that's why it is critical for children to learn healthy habits from an early age.
However, many North Carolina students don't get the chance to engage in physical education or activity during the school day. This affects long-term health, our economy, and even national security. In fact, a new study in the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice identifies North Carolina as one of the ten southern states that raises male or female recruits significantly less fit and/or more likely to get injured than recruits from other states. The study also shows that 25% of young Americans are too overweight to serve in the military. What's equally alarming is obese preschoolers and elementary students are showing some of the biomarkers related to cardiovascular disease risk.
Our children are too important to ignore this glaring issue in our education system. Since students spend most of the day in school, they need opportunities to eat well and be physically active during the school day. Physical education is an important way for students to learn lifelong skills to be healthy, active adults.
The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) is working to make sure that PE is prioritized in North Carolina. All students have the right to an active and healthy school day - and we can make a difference.
You can help build a healthier North Carolina. Stay up to date on what's happening with physical education in schools with the AHA/ASA's advocacy network, You're the Cure, and help us Prioritize PE.