The more television a child watches, even in the first years of life, the more likely he or she is to be thicker around the middle and less muscularly fit, according to a new study.
Previous studies have linked lots of television with childhood obesity and other child health detriments, but this study's authors say their report is the first to relate how time in front of the boob tube affects a specific measure of physical fitness, their explosive leg strength, an important asset for sports like soccer, basketball and football.
Talk to local parents about the TV-watching habits of their children. Are they watching more than an hour or two per day? Do the parents monitor how much TV the kids are watching?
With summer here, there are probably plenty of things to do in your local community. Print and link to programs from the area parks and recreation department. Let people know what other activities, like camping and boating, are available in your area.
Local physicians could be a good source for telling you what spending hours in front of the TV can do to a child. He or she can also recommend some guidelines for how much activity a child should be engaged in.