SUNDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Now that the school year is
in full swing, the nonprofit Alliance for a Healthier Generation
has designated October as International Walk to School Month.
The Alliance for a Healthier Generation was co-founded by the
American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation to
combat childhood obesity.
With that in mind, the objective of the October designation is
to encourage children to take up daily physical activity and adopt
healthy habits, such as walking or biking.
To that end, the Alliance is offering tips to make the
experience of walking or biking to school easy, fun and safe.
For example, adults are urged to check out the route first to
make sure the path the children will be taking is safe for
pedestrians, with adequately posted traffic signs and signals.
The Alliance suggests that parents talk with one another and
with their local Parent Teacher Association to organize
neighborhood walking groups, which provide kids with a safer and
more social experience.
Or, parents could choose to walk with the kids, which would give
them more time together and would also be a good way to lead by
example in making sure kids get the one hour of daily moderate
activity recommended for all children.
The Alliance suggests that, for those who would rather not walk,
biking is another way to get active while getting to school. Just
make sure kids are wearing properly fitted helmets and their
bicycles are tuned up.
And as an added bonus, leaving the car at home will lead to less
traffic congestion and, therefore, a safer environment for the kids
that are walking and the entire neighborhood.
For more on International Walk to School Month, visit the
Alliance for a Healthier Generation.