It's alarming: Obesity rates among U.S. children and adolescents have tripled since 1980. Even more frightening, obese kids have an 80-percent chance of lifelong obesity, putting them at risk for heart disease, diabetes, and other serious health problems.
You can take steps right now to reverse this statistic. How? By encouraging kids to get more exercise, such as riding their bikes. Bike riding can be good exercise. And to keep them safe while biking, they need a good helmet. TMA's Hard Hats for Little Heads program makes it easy to give kids a free helmet. Plus, we have the tools you need to encourage your young patients to ride their bikes.
Here are three ideas to get you on your way:
- Give a free helmet to children at their well-check appointment to encourage them to exercise.
- Hold a weekly and/or monthly drawing for free bicycle helmets. Excellent months to hold a drawing are Bike Month in May or Brain Injury Awareness Month in October.
- Plan a larger-scale giveaway in your community, at a health fair, or community/sports event that children will attend.
For each event, TMA provides free helmets with a matching purchase based on the amount you buy. We also provide educational materials in English and Spanish, including a video showing how to properly fit a helmet.
To find out more, e-mail Tammy Wishard, TMA's outreach coordinator, or call her at (800) 880-1300, ext. 1470, or (512) 370-1470.
Hard Hats for Little Heads is made possible through a grant from the TMA Foundation thanks to top donors — Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas, Prudential Financial, and an anonymous foundation — and gifts from physicians and their families.
Action, March 1, 2011