Shuswap residents can learn more about physical literacy and a local organization raising awareness of it at an upcoming open house.
PLAY (Physical Literacy and You) Shuswap is a non-profit organization committed to building healthy, active and physically literate communities in the Shuswap. It was formed in early 2019 through Canada’s Sport for Life Physical Literacy 4 Communities Project. Its members, who represent education, health, recreation, sport and community sectors, meet monthly to focus on three things:
• Promote awareness of physical literacy and its importance in living healthy, active lives
• Promote the development of physical literacy skills in our community members of all ages
• Provide physical literacy training
“Pre-covid, Canada’s Participaction report card for children’s level of physical activity was very poor (D) a failing grade!,” said Donna Flatman, treasurer and founding member of PLAY Shuswap. “During Covid, physical activity levels dropped even further with cancelled programs, closed facilities and social distancing requirements. This decrease in physical activity affected all age levels, preschool to senior, many even experienced levels of isolation and depression.
“It is now more important than ever for everyone to be active to gain the benefits of physical activity – a healthy body and mind.”
The International Physical Literacy Association describes physical literacy as “the motivation, confidence, physical competence, knowledge and understanding to value and take responsibility for engagement in physical activities for life.”
The development of physical literacy starts at birth and continues through all life’s stages, says PLAY Shuswap. Participating in physical activity is critical for physical literacy to develop, says the organization. Without opportunities to be active and practice fundamental movement skills, an individual’s physical literacy development may be compromised.
PLAY Shuswap hosts its first open house on Thursday, April 13, from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Little Mountain Field House in Salmon Arm (250 - 30th Street SE). Everyone is welcome to drop by to learn more about physical literacy and how PLAY Shuswap is partnering with individuals and organizations to keep Shuswap community members active for life.
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