An international study on children’s health and fitness was published on September 21, 2016, and revealed that Canada is ranked 19 out of 50 countries. This puts Canada in the middle of the scale, when it comes to kids’ fitness. The problem, according to a September 21 Global news article, Ph.D. student Justin Lang states that Canadian youth tend to sit around a lot.

Canada got a D- on physical activities because many sit and watch a lot of TV. Many do not join any physical activities, or even walk to school anymore.  Only 24% of parents said that their kids, five to 17, walk or bike to school, and 61% of parents say that their kids watch TV or play on the computer too much. The top five countries for physical fitness are: Tanzania, Japan, Estonia, Iceland and Norway, and the least fit countries were: South Korea, USA, Latvia, Peru, and Mexico.

Some of these countries, are not very rich, and/or are in crisis. Some of the parents of the kids in these countries have a very hard time affording sources of entertainment; they think of survival more than entertainment. These kids go outside and play or go somewhere with their friends because they get bored staying in if there is not much to do; therefore, they have more physical fitness than Canadian youth.  Most of the Canadian people do not need to worry much about survival because Canada has a better economy, but obviously there is a downslide to affluence.

Mr. Kenny Jamieson, senior boys’ and girls’ soccer coach, and grade nine basketball coach at Riverside Secondary said, “I am surprised that Canada had this rank because this is a competitive country, given Canada’s track record in the Olympics or the winter Olympics. We produce athletes but maybe the number of athletes are small compared to the population that Canada has.” Jamieson also believes that the big thing is just getting kids outside to play at a young age because it is just a part of being active. He continues by suggesting that “If you’ve been active since you were a kid, you are probably going to be active as you get older, and when you’re young and you’re used to staying at home playing videogames or watching TV, or whatever it might be” he thinks “that’s likely then, it will carry on into your future.”

Canada did not get a good grade on physical activity even though it has one of the best environments. There are very well made playgrounds and sports fields, (Soccer, Basketball, Tennis etc…), better than most countries have. What Canadian kids should do, is go outside and walk or exercise more. So Canada, get out there and do something! It will only do you well.

Feature photo courtesy of this website