The fun side of staying healthy

Lisa
Lisa Goudy
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There were a lot of smiling, giggling children at the YMCA on Sunday afternoon.

“Children nowadays, I think, spend a lot of time on computers and electronics and I think as a whole people are busy and don’t spend a lot of time together as a family,” said Sara Lyall, manager of human resources and communications with the Moose Jaw YMCA.

“This is just really something that promotes families getting together and then just learning different things to be healthy and just learning that healthy can be fun.”

The YMCA Moose Jaw held their free Healthy Kids Day 2014 event at the Fairford Street East YMCA Health and Fitness Centre.

“Healthy Kids Day is actually an event that happens all across Canada at all of our YMCAs. So (Saturday and Sunday), every Y across Canada more or less is having a healthy day activity,” said Lyall. “Our activity (Sunday) is just promoting healthy living basically for families and children. Everything here is related to health.”

That includes safety, physical health and spiritual health. An hour into the three-hour event, there were between 100 and 150 adults and children in attendance. The hope was to see 200 children come out.

Originally the event was to be held at Elgin Park, but because of the rain, it was moved inside to the Fairford YMCA location.

“We had to move it inside, which was disappointing, but it’s still turning out to be a great event,” said Lyall.

Some of the activities included jolly jumps, face painting, inflatable ring toss, inflatable bowling, dance, dress up and music, story time with the Moose Jaw Public Library and other activities.

Another activity was teddy bear check-ups.

“We’re just checking up the children’s teddy bears and basically giving them an experience of what they would expect in a clinic so they’re not as scared when they come to see us for their immunizations,” said Denille Ferguson, a public health nurse.

Joined with another public health nurse and two nursing students, Ferguson said they were checking things like temperature, height, weight, head circumference, give immunizations and gave kids a card of their record.

“It’s just kind of a fun experience for kids,” she said. “I think it’s important (for children) to be aware of their health and to know what to expect when they need care.”

There were also members of the Moose Jaw Police Department, the Moose Jaw Fire Department and the Moose Jaw EMS on hand with vehicles outside the YMCA. Saskatchewan Roughrider alumni Luc Mullinder was also in attendance.

Dr. Jacquie John, an optometrist at Primary Eye Care, said a lot of kids stopped by to participate in their putting and chipping net.

She added it’s important to be safe while being active.

“We’re just trying to safety for sports, things like when to get their first eye check,” she said. “All kids should be checked no later than three years of age. The sooner the better, but no later than three and that’s just to promote that there’ll be no undetected eye problems that will be harder to correct after the age of three. It’s best to get them checked well before they go to school.”

Follow Lisa Goudy on Twitter @lisagoudy.

Organizations: YMCA, Moose Jaw Public Library, Moose Jaw Police Department Moose Jaw Fire Department

Geographic location: Canada, Fairford Street, Elgin Park

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