The coronavirus, which closed schools and all environments in the Czech Republic for many months, had a strong impact on children’s sport. This stems from a survey conducted by Generali Česká pojišťovna, in which more than a thousand Czech children and adolescents took part. Data shows that 38% of them are exercising less than before the pandemic. In a third of respondents, the sporting level has not changed, more than 28% of them do more sport.
Although 22.5% of children found it easy to return to sport after the easing of measures and they immediately started playing sport again, two-fifths of those who took part in the survey said that it was difficult for them to return to sport. They can also be responsible for being lazy. 65% of children experience an increase in laziness.
This trend is confirmed by the statement of one of the respondents. “During the pandemic, I was quite lazy and spitting sports. “I had to catch up a lot, but thank God I’m back in the old dorms now, and what I went through got me. pushed a lot, not only physically but also mentally,” the girl said in an anonymous poll.
46% of children and adolescents are convinced that their physical condition has deteriorated during Covid-19.
The drastic reduction in circles often discouraged children from playing sports: more than two hundred respondents said they had to give up their favorite sport. Reduced interest The list of reports was also confirmed by Jiří Reichl, spokesperson for the Czech community Sokol, a gym association with more than 150,000 members.
“In the last year of covid alone, we did not have the traditional 6,000 new members, especially in the student category, that is to say children who have not yet managed to forge solid ties with friends and don’t know the fun of shared experiences in Sokol,” says Reichl. As he added, their association perceives the influence of covid on children’s sport very strongly.
Obesity, the problem of the future
The reduction in children’s sports activities has also affected their weight. One in two children said they gained weight during the pandemic. The problem of childhood overweight and obesity was also described for the News List by obesitologist Zlatko Marinov of the Childhood Obesity Clinic at Motol University Hospital, who is convinced that the coronavirus has caused a crisis of childhood obesity.
“The number of overweight and obese children has increased enormously in recent months. According to a survey of general practitioners, there has been an increase of 10%. Instead of the current 25%, we have 35% of children in overweight. Of the 14% who are obese, 24%. And what is very serious is that the percentage of children suffering from extreme obesity has increased from 4% to 13%”, describes the obsitologist who deteriorated.
Zlatko Marinov believes that obesity is mainly affected by the family environment in which children grow up. In his office, he now meets children who have gained ten to 15 kilos during confinement. “Within three pounds of weight gain, children have a chance of returning to their original post-lockdown weight. But with five pounds or more, no metabolism will be set and those children will also be overweight with them at the end of the day. future,” says Marinov.
One of the survey respondents also described restrictions on sports and weight gain. “The pandemic has been very long and I haven’t done much sport due to many restrictions, which are largely weight-related. I’m fine with that, but I’m still two kilos heavier.”
Also, according to an obesitologist, weight gain during covid-19 can affect children for life. He estimates that the lockdown will shorten the lives of 13% of the current child population aged 20-30, and 11% will suffer from serious chronic illnesses. In the Generali Česká pojišťovna survey, more than a third of children said they did not feel healthy, of which 7% even said they did not feel well at all.
One of the survey participants also described health problems due to a lack of sport. “I’m really sorry that because of the pandemic I lost my chances of success in the races and because of the constant having to be almost always at home, I’m pretty bad in physics. In addition, my problems health conditions such as scoliosis, depression and anxiety have worsened. I also have a much weaker immunity,” explains the young girl.
Parents want sports
Although the covid pandemic has made it difficult for children to play sports, most parents support sports with their children. Thanks to their parents, 42% of children have been playing sports since they were little, according to the data. On the other hand, 16% of children are not related to sports because their parents do not play sports either, 7% of children even said that sports were not popular in their family.
Most children (44.5%) practice sports alone, several times a week. Most of them go out to play sports with their parents once a month. Every week, a minimum of children play sports with their parents (1.1%). 7.2% of participating children even said they had never exercised, and more than 18% played less than once a month.
1,016 children and adolescents aged 12-17 took part in the Česká pojišťovna Generali sports survey. The survey looked at children’s views of the period of strict measures during the covid-19 pandemic, when schools were closed and all leisure activities, including organized sports, were restricted.