The 3 Main Benefits Of Trading Your Phone in For A Kite
YOU HAVE ALTERNATIVE OPTIONS TO SCREEN TIME!
Do you also wonder what happened to going out, socializing, meeting new people, or even flying kites in spring? Now, most of us would rather spend our day on the couch than leave the house. In other words, we are caught in a sedentary lifestyle!
The International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity explores what it means to be living a sedentary behavior in its 2017 paper. It defines a sedentary lifestyle in several terms: physical inactivity, stationary behavior, standing, screen time, non-screen-based sedentary time, lying, sitting, reclining, etc.
Wait… Does that sound relatable? Isn’t that what most of us do all day? Lying around, sitting on the couch, scrolling social media. Even if we have to move our body, our phone is always in our hands.
While technology provides us with comfort at hand, this new reality of the online world is full of red flags. It might surprise you, but research reveals those who exercise are 75% happier and healthier and 74% more successful than those who don’t.
In the following guide, we will shed more light on this ugly side of the internet and a sedentary lifestyle. The comparison will go side by side with the super good health benefits of an active lifestyle: getting outside, running around, flying kites, and getting sun.
New Reality of Online World: Is it THAT Ugly?
Such numbers are alarming because they are the direct cause of many dreadful diseases in today’s world. Take obesity, for example. A journal article published by the International Journal of Epidemiology recorded a rise in overweight and obesity trends from less than 50% of the population in the 1960s to almost 80% through 2020 in the US.
Another study done by SUN Cohort study (the SUN project) compared those who spent more than 42 hours/week watching television and/or using the computer with those doing the same for less than 10.5 hours/week. The results were shocking: a 95% difference in mental disorders in 10,381 participants who belonged to the first group!
When talking about mental disorders, it’s hard to ignore depression. With so many adverse effects of the internet going around, the British Journals of Sports Medicine conducted thirteen cross-sectional studies with 110,152 participants and 11 longitudinal studies with 83,014 participants. In cross-sectional research, the pooled RRs of depression for sedentary behavior was 1.31 (95%), while in longitudinal studies, they were 1.14 (95%).
Children, especially, are at the most risk of this sedentary lifestyle. The World Health Organization (WHO) records inactivity in 60 to 85% of people worldwide. Among that, nearly two-thirds of kids are thought to be inadequately active, which has detrimental effects on their health in the long run.
Some other harmful impacts of a sedentary lifestyle caused by vegetating in the online world include:
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Multiple Forms of Cancer
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Poor Body Metabolism
- Unregulated Blood Sugar Levels
- Unregulated Blood Pressure
It might surprise you that inactivity and higher screen time are also linked to early deaths. A study done by CDC in 2018 matched the data from 1990 to 1991 from the National Health Interview Survey with mortality data till December 31, 2011. The results showed that inadequate physical activity levels caused 8.3% of all recorded deaths.
In other words, the more you spend time staring at screens, the more inactive you are. While inactivity may appear soothing, it severely affects your body and mind in the long run. On the other hand, activities like going out, getting sun, exercising, and flying kites are excellent ways to lift your mood and health.
Still, How do Activities like Flying Kites Benefit My Health?
Before we dig into that, let’s first see how an inactive lifestyle impacts your body:
- When you stay inactive, your body doesn’t burn enough calories. It results in excessive fat and obesity.
- Because staying on the couch for more time also means less muscle movement, you risk muscular strength and endurance.
- A sedentary lifestyle also impacts bones, as they can become weaker and contain fewer minerals with time.
- Your body’s metabolism is also at risk, making it harder to break down sugar and fats.
- You will be prone to viruses and illnesses, for your body’s immune system will not be strong.
- Unregulated sugar levels and blood flow risks higher body inflammation.
- Inactivity can also disrupt hormones, impacting glands and hormonal cycles.
Not to forget, these are just physical risks, as a sedentary lifestyle and competitive online presence are also linked with an exhausted emotional, and drained mental health. Whether adults or children, staying online most of the day adversely impacts your overall health.
On the other hand, an active lifestyle, including movement and activities like going out, exercising, and fun outdoor games like flying kites, has significant health benefits.
How? Let’s find out!
The Health Benefits Of Getting Off The Screen And Flying A Kite Don’t End There!
Very few people are kite experts that can handle a kite without running around. For regular people, flying kites is considered a natural exercise because it can take a lot running to keep the kite in the sky, especially on a windless day.
This movement is not forced on a person , the recreational aspect entices you and helps you burn more calories. Besides, the muscles and bones in your arms and legs are constantly moving, unlike when you hold a phone almost 24/7 in the same position.
Thus, when such an activity as flying kites combines with recreation and family bonding, it becomes a natural exercise with its own health benefits.
Besides burning calories and moving your arms and legs, flying kites and associated activities also benefit your cardiovascular health. A study, Assessment of physiological demand in kite surfing, evaluates the effects of kite surfing as a cardio workout. Anyone that flies a kite knows that kite surfing is closely related.
It’s because moving your body keep your body running and protects the heart against blood clots in the vessels and arteries. It regulates blood flow and helps prevent irregular blood pressure and cholesterol.
While flying a kite alone can be rewarding, flying with friends can be a fare more fulfilling experience. The activity is naturally enjoyed with groups like friends and family. Thus, like any other outdoor activity, flying kites allow you to go out and engage with people.
You get to meet new people when you are not surrounded by four walls in your room, staring at a screen all day. Dr. Sawchuk at Mayo Clinic Minute agrees that social interaction improves memory and cognitive function, boosts pleasure and well-being, and may even lengthen your life.
Sunlight is important for everyone. If you are active on social media most of your day, you might forget to go out and get sun. This can result in vitamin deficiency and may weaken your bones.
Studies link vitamin D insufficiency with inadequate outdoor sun exposure. It’s because sunlight is responsible for vitamin regulation in the body, especially Vitamin-D.
When you fly kites, you also put your body into the sun, which regulates your body’s need for vitamin D. As a result, you are saved from loss of bone density, enjoy strong muscles and bones, and have an improved immune system!
About Animal Kites.
I started Animal Kites during the COVID lockdown to address these exact issues. Since major COVID shift to an only world we all have much less opportunity to have natural, non-screen-time physical activity. I started Animal Kites as a way to get myself outside and off the screen.
I ended up losing over 100 Pounds during this process, and simultaneously was able to try out and vet hundreds of kites. I found that single line children’s kites were my favorite and hit out upon the idea of Animal Kites. Now, not only do we vet the best and easiest to fly single lines kites. We also design them as well.
A good kite gives children and families a compelling reason to get outside, look up at the sky, run around, and be the physical creatures they need to be in order to develop into healthy, well rounded adults.
I’ve trekked the globe, sluething for the easiest to use beginner kites in the world. In the process we’ve come to understaned what makes a great beginner kite and we’ve incorporated those principals into our own line of Artist Designed Kites.
If you work with us, together we can make sure our communities and our children stop buying into the lie that screen time is healthy.
We need to stop letting our phones eat our lives.
The Only way to for us to be healthy is to go outside and to MOVE & BE ALIVE