Monday, May 09, 2011


Kick start a lifetime of healthy behaviors

With all the serious illnesses in the world, you might wonder why The William W. Backus Hospital and Plainfield Recreation Department are organizing a community kickball tournament at the Plainfield Central School on Saturday, May 14.

Believe it or not, this is actually serious business.

One of the goals of our ongoing Enjoy LIFE (Lifelong Investment in Fitness and Exercise) is to instill lifestyle changes to last a lifetime.

Whether it is taking a walk, going for a bike ride, or, yes, playing the old schoolyard game of kickball, one of the most important things we can do is to encourage families to be active – together.

The fact that there is an obesity problem in eastern Connecticut is well documented. We know that children who are overweight tend to be overweight as adults, and this can lead to many serious health problems.

We also know that children look up to their parents, and tend to emulate their behaviors. So if you spend the weekend sitting around the television set, chances are your children might too.

But if you are active, and make it a routine to exercise together as a family, the odds are better that you will be healthier and your children will be too.

Making it fun is important. Running 20 monotonous laps around a track might not be your children’s idea of fun. But playing a game of “horse” on your driveway basketball court, going to the local roller skating rink, or going bowling might be more up their alley.

Spending quality time with family is so important. Doing it in a healthy way is even better. You might just be able to kickstart a lifetime of comraderie, healthy behaviors and memories by participating in our kickball tournament. It’s worth a try. The games, open to adults and children, begin with registration at 9 a.m. and the games at 9:30 a.m. For more information, call the Plainfield Recreation Department at 860-564-1819.

Alice Facente is a registered nurse and clinical educator with the The William W. Backus Hospital Education Department. This column should not replace advice or instruction from your personal physician. If you want to comment on this column or others, visit the Healthy Living blog at or e-mail Ms. Facente or any of the Healthy Living columnists at

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