Good Vision and Improved Fitness Is Critical to Our Future Workforce

Good vision and fitness are key elements to keeping kids healthy and successful in the classroom and on the field. It is also vital for the future of our workforce. 

Too much screen time, not enough outdoor activity and a lack of awareness of the importance of eye exams play a significant role in an epidemic rise in nearsightedness. In the U.S. more than 12.1 million school-age children have some form of vision problem.

“When children can’t see well, it impacts so many aspects of their lives, including their learning and chances for future success,” says Kristan Gross, global executive director of the Vision Impact Institute

The Vision Impact Institute is working with The Cooper Institute to spread the word to millions of students and their parents across the country about the importance of vision screening and physical fitness assessment.

Children with poor vision are at a major disadvantage in the classroom because 80% of all learning occurs visually. Poor vision can also lead to poor fitness levels that carry on well into adulthood and lead to a host of other health-related problems. Research from The Cooper Institute clearly shows a correlation between student fitness and student achievement. 

Physical inactivity is one of the greatest threats to our children’s health and contributes greatly to the alarming rise of childhood obesity. Nearly 20% of school-aged children are obese and one in three children will be diagnosed with diabetes in their lifetime. Obesity and physical inactivity can lead to a life filled with chronic diseases and cardiovascular risk factors such as diabetes, cancer, heart disease and more. 

We should all be concerned about the impact this will have on our workforce. Today’s youth are less active, more overweight and unhealthier than ever before. We have to make serious changes if we want to protect the future of our children and our country. Nearly 75% of young adults are not fit for military service and obesity accounts for one-third of that. They are also not fit enough for physically demanding jobs across the country such as first responders, construction workers, and other labor-intensive jobs. The healthy, active students of today will be the healthy, active workers of tomorrow. Creating a healthier workforce for the future by improving fitness and vision is paramount to keeping productivity up and health care costs down.  

The Rosewood Foundation generously funded this venture in honor of the late matriarch, Caroline Rose Hunt, who was passionate about vision care and the success of children in our communities.

The Cooper Institute understands that vision is a key component of academic achievement and physical fitness. Together, with the Vision Impact Institute, we hope to raise awareness about how good vision and fitness can help students succeed now and Well. Into the Future.

Written by Breanna Palmeiro