Why Reduce Screen Time?

Summer is officially in full swing, and with less structured activity, it can be easy to spend the day watching TV, playing video games, or searching the web (especially on rainy days). With screens surrounding us in so many parts of our everyday lives, it may seem difficult to try to cut down on the amount of time we spend in front of them. So why is cutting down on screen time important?

Dad and son on bike outisde

First, and maybe most importantly, more time spent in front of a screen means less time being physically active. The warmer weather in the summer provides many opportunities to be outside and get creative with your physical activity for the day—it would be a shame to spend a beautiful day inside in front of a screen! Going outside to play with sidewalk chalk, jump rope, blow bubbles, or to ride a bike can be a fun and easy way to get your 1 hour of physical activity in while also reducing you recreational screen time.

A group takes a hike on the Pleasant Run Greenway

It’s not just the lack of physical activity that can be bad for you; spending time in front of a screen can impact a child’s health in other areas—especially younger children. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children under the age of 2 should not be spending any time watching screens at all, as this behavior can be habit-forming and can cause irregular sleep patterns.

Finally, spending time in front of a TV is often associated with snacking, and the distraction of the screen can mean we don’t pay attention to our portions or the nutritional value of our snacks and it’s easy to go overboard. The less screen time, the more likely we’ll reduce snacking on empty calories.

There are some small steps that you can take to reduce your family’s screen time. Visit this link here for some tips. And if you’re looking for outdoor activities that you and your family can enjoy, visit here and here and here and here! Tomorrow is Pack the Parks at all Indy Parks locations – free admission, free swimming, and tons of activities. Visit here for details. We hope to see you there!