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The Impact on Extracurricular Activities

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To investigate the impact on extracurricular activities with 9th grade high school freshman and lowering their BMI. Previous research has shown that obesity is on the rise. Obesity prevention programs have become a national and international health priority as rates of child obesity have been increasing in nearly all developed countries. With this being talked about young people have been studied to find out the disconnect in education and health consciousness. There are several factors related to successful obesity prevention programs include providing students with needed knowledge, attitudes, and behavioral skills to establish and maintain a healthy diet and engage in regular physical activity (Story, 1999). Although a recent study has examined physical activity by weight and race/ethnicity, the reports have not provided age specific breakdowns by weight or sex which may reveal different patterns and recommendations made for physical activity. 

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BMI has become an international concern in schools and for health care providers and systems, and the World Health Organization (WHO) which has placed this issue of one of the top concerns nationwide. Excess body weight contributes to development of diabetes, hypercholesterolemia, hypertension, strokes, and a variety of cancers. Allison et al. (1999) and Peeters et al. (2003) found a positive association between swelling body weight and mortality. In particular,Fontaine et al. (2003) claimed that reduction in life expectancy of a heavily obese young man may reach up to 22 % of his expected life span, accounting for a 13-year anticipation of death.

Statement of the ProblemThe problem is that 9th grade students are not motivated to participate in extracurricular activity that will contribute to a lesser BMI because they do not have transportation back and forth. The 9th grade boys show more motivation and lesser BMI from the females. (Ames C. 1992) The school districts must determine a way to include these things during school to encourage both boys and girls to be equally motivated to get their BMI down. The school district must allocate their scarcest resource, which is money. In the current economic times, many school districts are forced to cut spending and budgets (Staples, 2008). One of the most common budget cuts is funding for athletic and extracurricular activities. School districts are cutting coaching supplements, transportation for athletics, and funding for equipment. 

The school districts need to determine if this is the right course of action. Most students do not participate in extracurricular activities because of transportation. The school districts need to understand the relationship between student’s health and participation in extracurricular activities. They do not want to cut the funding to extracurricular activities if it is going to have a negative impact on student achievement. According to Mokdad et al. (2004), poor diet and lack of physical activity together are about to become one of the leading causes of avoidable death. 

Philipson and Posner(1999), Lakdawalla and Philipson (2009), Cutler et al. (2003), and Anderson et al.(2003) have suggested that technological progress has reinforced sedentary lifestyles through reduction of on-the-job physical activity, introduction of labor-saving devices,and increase in the availability of unhealthy processed foods. These trends are particularly harmful for poor socioeconomic groups. Although economic progress and urbanization have reduced the overall opportunities to exercise and access to healthy fruits and vegetables, low-income neighborhoods are the least safe for outdoor physical activity and are the most exposed to cheap calories, ”refined grains, sugary drinks, and fast food.

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