How you can move to live more

How you can move to live more

How you can move to live more

By Published On: April 5th, 2024

While the pandemic was hard on everyone for various reasons, one silver lining for me was virtually getting to meet amazing people working in the health and “play” space, including Amy Bantham, DrPH.

Based in Boston, MA, Amy is the CEO/Founder of Move to Live More, a research and consulting firm that helps clients combine evidence-based research with practice to improve communications, policy, and strategy and get people moving so they can live healthier lives.  

Amy initially reached out to interview me for her “Move To Live More” podcast, and we became fast friends.

We had never met personally until last fall at the Move With Us—The Inaugural Physical Activity Symposium conference in Washington, D.C.  

Needless to say, I was honoured to be featured in her new book, “Move To Live More: A Guide For Parents And Caregivers To Help Their Kids Move More And Feel Better,” which hit the Amazon best-seller list.  

As one of 20 thought leaders contributing to this book, it offers “50+ tips and 50+ takeaways on how and why kids need to move more for better physical health, mental health, and academic development.” 

These insights can transform how you or someone you know approaches children’s physical activity, leading to a healthier and happier lifestyle.

My deep-rooted concern about kids and inactivity has been a driving force throughout my career in health and wellness.

I have witnessed the transformative effects of physical activity on mood and memory, a testament to its profound impact.  

When co-founding LifeSports in 2004, my business partner, Kym Grippo, and I were concerned about the educational cuts to physical activity curriculum and saw a need to help educators introduce fun, innovative ways to get kids active in schools and daycares too, like the Munchkinetics program we developed for Kids & Company.   

Our objective was twofold:  

1) To introduce kids and teachers (from grades 4 through 12) to a way of exercise that felt like play. 

2) To fire up their neurotransmitters and movement patterns, increasing their ability to focus in class.  

Research has repeatedly shown that children need opportunities to move. As Lara N. Dotson-Renata stated in her article for The Atlantic, “Memory and movement are linked, and the body is a tool of learning, not a roadblock to or a detour away from it.”

As I share in Chapter 8 of “Play” in Amy’s book, establishing a solid foundation of physical activity in childhood is about more than immediate benefits; it’s an opportunity to model active play at any age and stage, especially reframing exercise as play.

Setting the stage for a lifetime of playability and health is a principle that fuels my passion even more today for initiatives like bringing RED January to Canada from the U.K.

When people—no matter their age—realize that all movement matters, rising every day to move your way boosts your social, physical and mental well-being, and the remarkable yet simple way play can be rewarding, enriching, and purposeful, together we can make the world a happier and healthier place.  

Play on!

Your friend and coach,

Jan xo

PS: Whenever you are ready, here are 3 ways I can help you PLAY for life:

  1. Click here to grab a copy of my best-selling book, The Play Book: How To Get In The Habit Of Good Health
  2. Join the FREE 7-Days of Healthy Habits Course that can help you starting today.
  3. Want to work with me personally on your wellness goals? Click here to book a call.

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About the Author: Janet Omstead

To re-ignite people’s passion for play (movement) to fight chronic disease while improving their quality of life as they age.

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