Taking the Kids: First Lady Talks Summer Vacations

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Ready to let the kids lead the way on vacation?

First lady Michelle Obama suggests that’s one way to get everyone more active on vacation this summer. The first lady told Taking the Kids in an exclusive interview, “The key to getting kids moving is to find something they enjoy, and join in.” For the first family, that includes biking.

Every traveling parent, including the first parents, of course knows that if the kids are happy on vacation, everyone will be happy. But these days, with worries about childhood obesity and fitness, none of us want our kids to spend vacation sitting around eating fries, playing video games or texting, even if that’s what makes them happy.

Neither do we. American travelers recently ranked getting healthier as their top goal this year, according to research from the new Portrait of American Travelers from MMGY Global/Harrison Group.

At the same time, kids surveyed by the U.S. Travel Association said that what they like most on vacation is doing things with their families that they can’t do at home, things they’ll talk about all year. Why not make some of those activities ones that get you all moving, suggests the first lady. “I’d encourage families to pick activities — no matter where you’re visiting — that involve getting active, whether it’s walking, biking or anything else you find fun,” she said.

Michelle Obama has made combating childhood obesity and encouraging families, including her own, to eat healthier and get more active one of her signature White House initiatives by way of her Let’s Move! campaign.