Kids actively playing and holding hands

Social networking: Increasing physical activity?

Peer pressure gets a bad rap, especially from parents of young kids, but new research has found that persuasive friends can have a positive effect: increased physical activity.

A report from Pediatrics linked social networks among kids aged five to twelve with their activity levels.

“We see evidence that the children are mirroring, emulating or adjusting to be similar to their friends,” said lead researcher Sabina Gesell.

Kids participating in the study who became friends with active kids increased their exercise level, compared to those who befriended less active children.

What activity does your child and their friends enjoy the most?

Peer pressure can be a powerful force, and sometimes a positive one. For example, hanging out with active peers may lead kids to exercise more, making a child’s social network a potential vehicle for promoting healthy habits and reducing obesity. Full story

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