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National Physical Fitness and Sports Month – May 2023

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month is celebrated in May. It is an initiative by the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition. Fitness isn’t just for professional athletes. As doctors and nutritionists will tell you, any physical movement is good for you.

Many people give up on their fitness goals early on due to misplaced notions of fitness. Every year in May, the council aims to dispel these myths. Exercise isn’t about the pounds you shed or the number of burpees you should be able to do. The key to an active, healthier lifestyle is consistency. No matter what you do, ensure you keep doing it, and while you’re at it, eat healthier, and make better choices each day. The simplest things are the hardest to do. But this is the key to leading a happy and healthy life.

History of National Physical Fitness and Sports Month

As early as 1956, American leaders recognized the importance of fitness for the health and future of the nation. President Eisenhower set things in motion by creating the President’s Council on Youth Fitness. In the early 1960s, President Kennedy renamed the council the President’s Council on Physical Fitness. The idea behind the renaming was to include people of all ages, encouraging everyone to lead active lives. The advocacy month is chock-a-block each year with activities and resources that promote an active lifestyle. Stay active and eat healthily — that’s the mantra for May.

The council shares resources online with tips on exercise and nutrition. There’s something in there for everyone. Are you a parent struggling to get your teenager out of their rooms? Take the help of online resources that encourage adolescents to move more. From senior citizens to post-partum women — everyone can get on board. Schools can join in the fun through healthy breakfast programs. Few things can compare to the brain and body fuel a good breakfast brings.

In addition, the council conducts several campaigns through social media and other platforms. The #0to60 and the Let’s Move! campaigns push people of all ages to increase daily physical activity. The #MoveinMay campaign shines the spotlight on healthy living. Adopting a healthier lifestyle isn’t as difficult as it may seem. In the end, it all boils down to a shift in mindset and priorities.

Physical activity keeps you fit, but it also reduces stress and the risk of chronic diseases. Exercise can make us less anxious and depressed. Plus, it can help teens develop leadership and relationship-building skills early on.

Whether you enjoy a brisk walk, competitive sports, or dancing — keep at it this month. Even better, get your loved ones on board. If you’re new to exercise, this month is ideal to start. Talk to a friend, consult an expert if you’d like. Start small but start somewhere.

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month timeline

Pre-1000 B.C.
Fitness for the Primitive Man

Besides hunting and gathering, the earliest humans walk over 20 miles to visit family and friends.

2500 B.C. — 250 B.C.
Confucius Knew it All

Cong Fu Gymnastics is born from the teachings of Confucius.

1776 — 1860
America Gets Fit

German and Swedish immigrants make sports and gymnastics popular in the United States.

1939 Onwards
The Unlikely Origins of Modern Fitness

The needs of World War II and the Cold War give birth to a new fitness movement in the United States.

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month FAQs

What is the importance of physical fitness?

It improves respiratory, cardiovascular health, and overall health. Staying active can also help you maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk for type two diabetes and heart disease, and reduce your risk for some cancers. In other words, staying active is a crucial part of maintaining good health and wellness.

What happens after one month of working out?

One month of regular exercise improves the body’s strength and stamina. You may be able to run, cycle or walk faster without losing breath. Strength training becomes better, and you may be able to do more reps.

What are wellness components?

Personal health and wellness go beyond exercise. Holistic health covers five essential aspects: physical, social, spiritual, emotional, and intellectual wellness.

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month Activities

  1. Join a sports league or group

    Check for community sports leagues where you are. Whether it’s soccer, basketball, or frisbee — sign up and have a blast.

  2. Exercise with family

    Depending on fitness levels, take some time to help everyone work up a good sweat. Power walk with parents and dance with grandma. Help everyone feel good about themselves today.

  3. Make fitness fun

    Toss a ball around the yard. Shoot some hoops. Show kids that fitness can be fun and not a drag. Cap each session with fresh juices and a tasty, healthy snack.

5 Facts About Sports That Will Blow Your Mind

  1. The first sports

    Wrestling and fighting games were reportedly the first sports events played by the earliest humans.

  2. The first Olympics

    In 760 B.C., the first Olympics took place in Athens, with foot racing as the only event.

  3. Sports in outer space

    American astronaut Alan Shephard played golf on the moon in 1971.

  4. Unwritten rules of the Tour De France

    One rule says that if a race leader needs to pee, everyone must stop or slow down.

  5. Australia’s bizarre sport

    Sheep counting is one of the official sports in Australia.

Why We Love National Physical Fitness and Sports Month

  1. Fitness for everyone

    A month that gets family, friends, and everyone moving? What’s not to love? These are the best kind of #familygoals.

  2. A community effort

    Getting fit can sometimes be a lonely road. We find that it’s easier to stay the course when everyone around is as invested. It’s also way more fun.

  3. Our mindsets shift

    We don’t need to be pro athletes or young to lead active lives. The best workout is the one that works for you.

National Physical Fitness and Sports Month dates

YearDateDay
2023May 1Monday
2024May 1Wednesday
2025May 1Thursday
2026May 1Friday
2027May 1Saturday
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