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Is our youth sports culture effective in schools and clubs?

Sathasivam, a former Malaysian athletic champion said that a survey in 2015 showed  that our youths are the most bored in the world, and also the fattest in the Asean region. He demands to know how the Youth and Sports and Education Ministries, will address these issues. 

Sathasivam: Sport is one of the most popular leisure activity among young people. It is often organised in the form of sports clubs or extracurricular activities, playing football, hockey, athletics or other sports in our school system.

We have over 10,000 schools primary and secondary in the country with a student population around 5.3 million with 400,000 teachers. The slogan “ 1Murid1 Sukan” policy limits participation and in improving health, fitness, fun and rekindling unity among our diverse group of students.

Children and young people should be encouraged from a young age, to participate in organised sport at school and clubs.

Physical education classes in schools, cannot slip into obscurity in our education system. Our children lead a sedentary life hooked to their computer games.

Obesity in children

MTV Asia  survey in 2015 showed  that our youths are the most bored in the world, and among the fattest in the Asean region.

What are the Youth and Sports and Education Ministries going to do about this?

It is important that parents and our school system address the serious issue of obesity which is on the rise due to poor eating habits and a lack of exercise.

The Education Ministry must continue the National Sports Day initiative in our schools during Physical Education classes. We should  choose to foster a sports-minded culture that encourages children to be physically active.  In the process we will reduce the risk of emotional problems such as anxiety and depression which seem to be on the rise.

More school children are playing truant, loitering in the bus terminals, shopping complexes and in cyber cafes. A growing population of our youth indulge in destructive behaviour such as taking drugs, as well as gangsterism and Mat Rempit activities.

It is important that our Education and Youth and Sports Ministries work hand in hand as partners not only to promote good mental health and fitness culture, but also to improve the social skills among our youths.

Our youths must be encouraged to participate in leadership and debate programmes. Programmes like Unity Carnival Games, Sukma, Marathon runs, Inter-club football where sports associations and state play a key role in supporting and promoting those sporting initiatives in creating a healthy sports culture to drop the “fattest nation” tag in Asean.

From these competitions, we may uncover new talents like Nicol David (squash), Lee Chong Wei (badminton), Azizul Hasni Awang (cycling), and Razip Ismail (bowling), who are world class athletes in the sporting world.

Maju-lah Sukan Untuk Negara.

(The views expressed are those of the contributor)
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C. Sathasivam Sitheravellu is a former Malaysian athletic champion.

He is a determined, persistent and goal driven individual who continues to support current and former sportsmen. A graduate of Sports Management and Marketing, Sathasivam is now an Human Resources Consultant.

 

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