Health

Adventure to Fitness goes mobile to wage always-on fight against childhood obesity

Image Credit: Adventure to Fitness/Facebook

Adventure to Fitness is trying to get kids off their butts and moving.

The online fitness program for kids launched a mobile platform today that provides health and fitness instruction for kids.

The Adventure to Fitness program includes 30-minute videos that encourage kids to be active and teaches them about nutrition, exercise, and other healthy habits. The site also delivers weekly tips from child development experts, supplemental activities and games, and kid-friendly health recipes.

The company claims to reach 10 million children. It also has tools for educators and said over 100,000 teachers use its curriculum, making it one of the most popular physical education supplements in schools for K-5 students.

Childhood obesity in the U.S. has reached epidemic proportions, more than doubling in children and tripled in adolescents in the past 30 years. In 2010, more than one-third of U.S. children and adolescents were overweight or obese.

Obese youth are at a higher risk for cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes as well as bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and social and psychological problems. These are alarming statistics, and yet obesity is highly preventable through healthy eating and physical activity.

The threat is larger than just individual health. First Lady Michelle Obama adopted this as her flagship cause, saying, “the physical and emotional health of an entire generation and the economic health and security of our nation is at stake.”

An increasingly sedentary lifestyle is a major culprit here. Kids watch more TV, play on the Internet instead of outside, get rides to school, and spend less time running around in gym class and after-school sports.

Adventure to Fitness’s program tries to integrate physical activity into everyday life with fun characters and interactive activities. Kids can jog through China in the “Chinese Challenge,” or learn about American history in “Colonial Chaos” which combines lessons about the revolutionary war with exercise.

Making this content available on mobile devices is a key part of the goal of enabling fitness anytime, anywhere — without needing a gym or other equipment.

It’s also an interesting case of using technology to solve a problem technology helped cause. Kids love watching videos and playing digital games, and Adventure to Fitness takes a smart approach to harnessing those preferences for good.


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