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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Brenner Children’s pediatric emergency department has moved back to its original location. Learn more

In order to help protect patients, family members and health care workers from the spread of COVID-19, no visitors are allowed at any of Wake Forest Baptist Health’s outpatient or inpatient facilities, except in certain situations.
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Should I Start My Child on an Exercise Program?

Should I Start My Child on an Exercise Program?

My 12-year-old son is gaining weight quite rapidly. He was always "just right" until middle-school homework cut into his play time. Should I start him on an exercise program?
- Rose

As kids get older, they often have more homework and other responsibilities to balance.

Help your son make a schedule, such as an hour of playtime after school, followed by time for homework. Encourage him to get involved in an activity he enjoys, whether it's a team sport like basketball or soccer or just biking around the neighborhood with friends. He'll be more likely to stick with it if it doesn't feel like a chore.

Keep lots of healthy foods in the house and be a good role model — he'll see how important exercise is if you make time for it too.

Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: October 2013