Exercise and physical activities are beneficial to the youth in many ways. Studies show that the risks of adulthood diseases are reduced with an increase in exercises at a lower age (Vehrs & Facsm, 2016). Youths can use exercises to improve their physical fitness, body shape, academic performance, socialize and reduce boredom.
There exists a number of health benefits associated with exercises among the youth. One of the benefits of exercises is the improvement of the health of the heart by strengthening the cardiovascular muscles so that the heart can efficiently pump blood throughout the body (A.D.A.M, 2017). Thus, regular exercises reduce the risk of developing heart-related diseases. Besides, regular exercises help to keep blood vessels open and flexible ensuring smooth flow of blood and therefore reducing blood pressure (Goldfied, Adamo, Rutherford, & Murray, 2012). As such, youths who dont participate in exercises are at a higher risk of developing of blood pressure. Its, therefore, necessary for young people to routinely exercise because its a remedy to heart-related diseases, and by doing so, they will live a healthy life and avoid developing illnesses such as high blood pressure.
The lack of exercises is a contributor to the rise of cases of overweight and obesity among children and the youth in America. Obese and overweight young people are aerobically unfit, and it is a major concern because they are exposed to the risks of metabolic disorders and the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. Also, such youths could develop medical conditions like type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol levels, hypertension, and apnea (Goldfied et al., 2012). Through regular exercises, the chances of youths gaining weight and becoming obese are minimized, and therefore the risk of exposure to chronic and lifestyle diseases are reduced.
Obesity and overweight not only expose young people to the risk of severe medical conditions but also to damaging psychosocial effects such as weight-based mockery, and reduced self-esteem(Goldfield et al., 2012). Goldfield et al. further reveal that there exists social stigma against overweight and obese youths which lead to isolation and separation. Such situations yield damaging psychological effects which, in turn, pose severe impacts on the happiness and overall well- being of overweight and obese young people. For instance, studies have found that overweight ladies are usually unhappy and there exists a link between happiness and weight and how youths spend their leisure time (Archer, 2014). Findings of Archers studies show that regular physical exercises promote happiness and health life among the youth. Exercises encourage interaction and socialization among the youths and boost the self-esteem of the overweight and obese youths and children. These benefits reveal the need for young people continually exercise so as to raise their level of happiness and individual health.
Regular physical activities and exercises have a significant impact on academic performance of school going youths and children. Both long term and instant academic benefits on academics can be derived from exercises and physical activities as result of increased concentration in classroom activities immediately after physical activities (Active Living Research, 2015). According to Active Living Research, schools that introduced physical activities to their curriculum had their standardized scores improve by 6% compared to those that conducted their lessons without physical activities. Also, the lack of exercises has been identified as a contributory factor to a condition known as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) which affects attention and concentration of youths and children due to low self-esteem (Goldfield et al., 2012). Due to the discussed benefits, youths should be encouraged exercise so as to boost brain activity as well as enhance concentration in the classroom. This would result in better academic performance.
There are, however, risks associated with exercises. Some youths with certain illness may experience problems while conducting exercises. Some of those risks may be associated with people with high blood pressure. For instance, young persons with high blood pressure are exposed to the risk increasing the pressure during the exercises if they do not breathe as normally as possible throughout the exercise (A.D.A.M, 2017).Such occurrences may be fatal if the persons involved do not get quick medical attention.
Individuals engaging in exercises may also expose themselves to the risk of sustaining physical injuries during the exercises. Studies show that high-level physical activities increase the risks of injuries and that individuals with certain conditions such as obesity are at a higher risk of sustaining injuries during exercise compared to those that are healthy (Girardi, Rabul, Rajabal, & Pike,2013).Injuries may have a reverse effect on youths. For instance, injured youths may experience concentration problems in the classroom.
Resistance training (RT) involves the use of resistive loads, different movement velocities and a variety of training modalities (Faigenbaum, Lloyd & Meyer, 2013) while exercising. According to Faigenbaum et al., youths who engage in resistance training enhance their muscular strength, thus, improving their competence and confidence to participate in a variety of games, sports and fitness activities. Although RT exercises demand huge amounts of energy, expert monitoring of the involved youths yield several benefits.
Overly, the risks associated with exercises should not discourage young people from regular physical activities because health benefits derived from such regular exercises outweigh the injury risks.
A.D.A.M. (2013, June 17). Physical Activity. New York Times [New York]. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/health/guides/specialtopic/physical-activity/exercise's-effects-on-the-heart.html
Archer, T. (2014). Health Benefits of Physical Exercise for Children and Adolescents. Journal of Novel Physiotherapies, 04(02). doi:10.4172/2165-7025.1000203
Active Living Research. (2015). Active Education: Growing Evidence on Physical Activity and Academic Performance. Retrieved from Active Living Research website: http://activelivingresearch.org/sites/default/files/ALR_Brief_ActiveEducation_Jan2015.pdf
Faigenbaum, A. D., Lloyd, R. S., & Myer, G. D. (2013). Youth Resistance Training: Past Practices, New Perspectives, and Future Directions. Pediatric Exercise Science, 25(4), 591-604. doi:10.1123/pes.25.4.591
Girardi, Alberta, author. (2013). The injury consequences of promoting physical activity: An evidence review.
Goldfield, G. S., Adamo, K. B., Rutherford, J., & Murray, M. (2012).The Effects of Aerobic Exercise on Psychosocial Functioning of Adolescents Who Are Overweight or Obese. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, 37(10), 1136-1147. doi:10.1093/jpepsy/jss084
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