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The Importance of Play

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We've all heard the saying, "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy."  This proverb dates back hundreds of years, and refers to the idea that without time away from "work" a person becomes bored and/or boring. Playing is inherently rewarding, teaches perseverance, leads to mastery of a skill and fosters self-respect. Plus... Its fun!

There are multiple studies out including one done by the American Academy of Pediatrics that discuss the importance of play among children (http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/119/1/182) and how it is essential for the cognitive, emotional, and physical well-being of children and youth.

But it's also no secret that play is what keeps people young, regardless of the numbers on a calendar.

I like to tell a story about my grandmother. Every day she would do mind-puzzles for fun. She said it kept her mind engaged and she felt like her time was being effectively used instead of sitting in front of a television mindlessly watching what was being shown on a little box. She felt and looked younger.

Studies have also shown that people that are deprived of the opportunity to play, tend to suffer from depression, stress, and an overall sense of pessimism.

Nobody wants that in their lives.

So I encourage you to get outside and fly a kite, throw a ball, or just get out and jump around. Get out that board game that has been gathering dust in your closet and invite a few friends over to play.

Even if its just once a week, your body and mind will thank you!

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