The Rapidian

YMCA's Healthy Kids Day aims to keep children active

The YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids’ Healthy Kids Day is coming up on April 30! As spring transitions to summer, this free event is a reminder not to let children idle away their days. Instead, we want to keep kids active, learning, and having fun.
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Participating YMCA Event Times:

DAVID D. HUNTING YMCA
10:00 AM-12:00 PM

• Parent Child Zumba
• Rock Wall
• Face Painting
• GRPD Police Officer
• Helen DeVos Children's Hospital
• Healthy Activity Station
• Healthy Snack Station
• Crafts
• Downtown Market
• Western & Southern Life
• Child ID Printing

MARY FREE BED YMCA
11:00 AM-2:00 PM

• Food Programs, with Free Recipes
• Temporary Tattoos, in the KidZone
• Climbing Wall (11 AM-3 PM)
• Family Fitness Class
• YMCA Veggie Van
• Activities in the Teaching Barn
• Fire Department and Truck
• YMCA Camp Manitou-Lin Games

SPARTAN STORES YMCA
10:00 AM-3:00 PM

10 AM-12 PM
• Obstacle Course
• Stretching Station
• Community Mural
• Make your own Healthy Trailmix
• Activity Handouts
• Hopscotch Board Outside
12 - 2 PM
• Games and Activities
12 - 12:45 PM
• Family Group Fitness (7 Yrs.+)
1 - 3 PM
• Community Open Swim

VISSER FAMILY YMCA
10:00 AM-12:00 PM

• Food by Jimmy John's
• Community Art Project
• KDL Craft/Activity
• Acton Chiropractic Demonstration
• Fire Truck Tours by Fire Dept.
• Stretching Station for Yoga
• Open Swim at Noon
• Dance it Off Zumba
• Healthy Taste Test
• Cooking Demonstrations
• YMCA Veggie Van
• Obstacle Course
• Climbing Wall

WOLVERINE WORLDWIDE FAMILY YMCA 
10:00 AM-12:00 PM and 4:00-6:00 PM

• Snack
• Pool Noodle Hockey
• Zoo-Themed Yoga
• Giant Marbles Game
• Balloon Table Tennis
• Paper Plate Ring Toss
• Relay Race
• Rabbit Hole Game
• Cup Stacking Competition

 

The YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids’ Healthy Kids Day is coming up on April 30 and it is all about building on the “COOL” factor inside every kid. As spring transitions to summer, this event is a reminder not to let children idle away their days. Instead, we want them to discover their potential and make this their best summer ever! By keeping kids active, learning, and having fun, the Y will host a variety of free activities at most of their Greater Grand Rapids facilities.

Families and children will play active games, enjoy the gym and pool, climb the rock wall, get their face painted and eat healthy snacks.

The Y believes in the potential of all children, and we strive to help kids find the Wow! factor inside themselves,” said Nicole Pratt, Association Child Care Director. “A child’s development is never on vacation, and Healthy Kids Day is a great opportunity to educate families and motivate kids to stay active in spirit, mind and body throughout the summer.

With summer vacation breaking up the children’s routine, with mornings spent sleeping in, afternoons spent watching TV or playing video games in the cool air conditioning, and evenings enjoying a nice ice cream cone before bed. It may sound great, but a summer spent like this can have lasting negative effects. Children are less physically active and less engaged in learning during the summer months, and research shows that children gain weight two to three times faster than during the school year. In addition, there is often Summer Learning Loss and kids can fall behind academically because they don’t have access to out-of-school learning opportunities.

Healthy Kids Day is a powerful reminder not to let children idle away the summer but instead focus on physical and mental play. Across the nation, over 1 million participants will be involved in games, healthy cooking demonstrations, arts and crafts and more at local YMCAs.
 

Here are some tips to sustain healthy habits throughout the summer:

— Fruits and veggies: Make sure kids get at least five servings a day, the minimum number nutritionists recommend to maintain healthy childhood development.

— Foster an early and ongoing passion for books: Read to and with your kids. Help children read at every age and every stage of their development.

— Find ways to stay active: Plan out activities that the whole family could do, like setting a family goal of teaming up for community or charity events like races, walks, fun runs and bike rides.

— Sleep: Doctors recommend 10 to 12 hours of sleep a day for children ages 5 to 12 and 7 to 8 hours per night for adults. Sleep plays a critical role in maintaining our healthy immune system, metabolism, mood, memory, learning and other vital functions.
 

For more information about the Y, visit www.grymca.org.

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