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 Childhood Obesity Solved by Hydraulic Circuits    
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Symanthia Harper

Stemming Childhood Obesity With Hydraulic Exercise Circuits

The alarm is sounding, this could be the first generation of Americans not to have a longer lifespan than their parents, luckily there is a solution.

By Symanthia Harper

Editor's Note:

Symanthia Harper is the founder of Shapes for Women and has recently developed a new line of hydraulic circuit training machines specially for the smaller bodies of kids. Having been a leader in the first wave of addressing women's obesity through 30-minutes express gyms, she offers a convincing treatise that circuit concept is poised for an encore in addressing the heartbreak of childhood obesity. Read on…

The Alarm Has Been Sounding

Obesity has been rampant in America, but now it is impacting our most precious resource, our kids. Teenagers in the U.S. have higher rates of obesity than those in 14 other industrialized countries. In fact, among American mid-teens, a whopping 30% are clinically overweight and 15% are obese.

But it's not just our teenagers, according to a National Academy of Sciences report, obesity is dipping into the younger ages with some 9 million children older than the age of 6 also being obese.

The trend line is not good. In the 1960s, about 4% of U.S. children between the ages of 6 - 11 were overweight. By 2000, that figure had quadroupled . The concern is that, medically, there is a direct correlation between obesity and disease.

Doctors are now seeing typically adult health problems - such as high blood pressure and heart disease - in progressively younger children. The problem has become so acute that the disease formerly called "adult-onset diabetes" has been renamed "Type 2 diabetes" because more and more obese children are contracting it.
child on scale
Our kids keep tipping the scale progressively more and more. More and more diseases previous prevelent only in adults are showing up in overweigt kids.

The Solution To The Overall Obesity Epidemic Begins With The Young

The war against obesity, scientists now understand, must begin before the kids enter adolescence. That's because, as a 2005 study from Tufts University proved, when it comes to being overweight, past is most definitely prologue.

Once excess weight sets in, it tends to stubbornly stay there for life. The scientists in that study found that girls who were pudgy as fourth-graders were nearly 8 times more likely, than their peers, to be overweight in middle- age.

Other evidence states that overweight or obese kids have a 70% chance of becoming overweight or obese adults. As obese adults they will face a plethora of diseases that will rob them of a long and productive life. Former President Clinton has been recently quoted that, "Our children may be the very first generation not to have a longer lifespan their parents".

How Did We Arrive Here?

Certainly the pundits are debating the underlying causes, but modern day childhood obesity is all related to our success in creating abundant food, machinery, computers, and passive entertainment.

The chief culprit for kids may vey well be fast food, computers and video games. It's the double whammy of lack of physical activity coupled with high caloric foods. All that automation by HDTV, computers, iPods, web surfing, have caused our children to become overly sedentary.

Couple that with Big Macs and Big Gulps and you have a recipe for disaster. A snack consisting of a Big Mac with "super sized" French fries and Coke contain approximately 1,600 calories. Most kids only need 2,000 - 2.400 calories is a single day!

Attacking the Childhood Obesity Problem

There are many ways to treat this problem. Just about anything having to do with increasing physical movement and decreasing caloric intake throughout the day is going to help the general young population. But new, unforeseen, systemic problems in our society require totally new, unforeseen, solutions.
Child Shoulder Press Machine
Above is a child's shoulder press machines developed by Shapes for Women. Notice it needs no seat adjustments and there are no pinch points, it's safe for kids.
One recent statistic offering hope is that the incidences of obesity among adult women has appeared to level off. Although still high at 33.2%, it has not risen since 1999. (Unfortunately for men, the percentage is still creeping up.)

One contributing factor is the prolific growth in openings of 30-minute women-only hydraulic circuit gyms across the country. Although they can't take all the credit for the stemming of the tide in women's obesity, certainly they have made a contribution.

That very same technology has been recently re-engineered to be applicable to children. If it is as widely adopted by kids, as it is currently by women, it will start the reversal process.

Hydraulic Circuit Training for Kids in a Nutshell

A hydraulic circuit for kids is very similar to those for adult women (and men for that matter). A circuit consists of anywhere from 6-12 hydraulic machines. Within a group, each child works out at a station typically for 30 seconds, and then moves on to the next station.
Not all stations are these machines, there are activities interspersed to allow the kids' muscles to recover, yet keep them active and keep their heart rates elevated. Activities such as hopscotch, hula hoops, bungees, balls, jump ropes, punching bags, and scooters keep them active and engaged.

The chief benefit of this type of exercise is that it targets the entire body, it strengthens muscles, increases bone density, improves connective tissue, and the kids are in an aerobic state for the entire 30 minutes. Weight loss is achieved through this aerobic activity and through added lean muscle mass which eats fat even while the children are at rest.

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