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There was a time when the peak of the school year's last dismissal bell signaled a summer of running, biking, hiking and outdoor play. But in a world increasingly taken over by texting, handheld video games, Internet surfing and 600 channels of television programming, children may not be getting out all that much during the dog days anymore.
In fact, a lack of exercise is an ongoing problem in this country. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a third of all children don't get the appropriate amount of vigorous activity—and 10 percent of all children are completely inactive. What's worse, the amount of activity tends to decrease even further as kids age, establishing sedentary lifestyles into adulthood. And since kids today spend a whopping 25 percent of their waking hours watching television, getting them up and off the couch is important.
For more information on outdoor activities, as well as a "play place" finder for your area, visit www.letsmove.gov.
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