Health Benefits of Exercise and Physical Activity:
Reduce the risk of premature death
Reduce the risk of developing and/or dying from heart disease
Reduce high blood pressure or the risk of developing high blood pressure
Reduce high cholesterol or the risk of developing high cholesterol
Reduce the risk of developing colon cancer and breast cancer
Reduce the risk of developing diabetes
Reduce or maintain body weight or body fat
Build and maintain healthy muscles, bones, and joints
Reduce depression and anxiety
Improve psychological well-being
Enhanced work, recreation, and sport performance
OXFORD COMMUNITY CENTER
BENEFITS FOR CHILDREN PARTICIPATING IN RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES
Participation in recreation activities leads to well-balanced, healthy and physically-active children. The early years are critical. Considerable evidence exists that circumstances in the first years of a child's life have lifelong impacts on their health, learning, and coping skills. Recreation can play a positive role in this development.
Participation in recreation programs and activities benefits children in many ways:
.. Promotes good physical and emotional development in children; develops motor skills and stimulates intellectual, emotional and social growth.
.. Develops social skills; i.e. relating to others, learning social roles and reinforcing behavioral norms
.. Builds positive self esteem and self worth; children gain a sense of achievement from mastering skills which leads to higher achievement and better results in school.
.. Develops life and leaderships skills by participating in team and sport activities, being group leaders, making decisions and solving problems
.. Facilitates long term health benefits; i.e. physical activity.
.. Reduces the risk of disease such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity and osteoporosis
.. Stimulates children's minds and creative thinking through play, games and creative programs.
.. Fosters an awareness of the larger community and cross cultural understanding.
.. Enables children with disorders to achieve the same level of social, physical and academic competencies as their peers.
.. Develops positive attitudes towards the importance of
recreation and leisure in contributing to healthy, active lifestyles.
Other benefits to children and families include:
.. Recreation provides positive role models for children
.. Recreation is a strong mitigating factor in reducing child and family poverty.
.. Recreation contributes to a healthier, stable family life when parents participate in their children's recreation activities.
.. Providing recreation for children is associated with good outcomes for mothers.
.. Subsidizing recreation for children who cannot afford to pay, pays for itself through reduced use of social and health services.
.. Recreation provides fun, safe learning environments for children.
Stacy K. Barr
Department of Community Services
Town of Oxford