Cruz Beckham has kick-started a parenting debate about how young is too young to be working out in the gym.
Cruz, who at 12 years old is David and Victoria Beckham’s youngest son, shared a short clip to Instagram of him bench-pressing weights at the gym with his older brother, Brooklyn, and a friend.
“No gains with @chasenfitness @brooklynbeckham and @danieldarri55” he captioned the clip, along with laughing and joking emojis.
A post shared by Cruz Beckham (@cruzbeckham) on Oct 24, 2017 at 12:02pm PDT
Although Cruz can be seen being helped to lift the weights, fans were still quick to voice concern about his age and whether he was too young to be working out with weights.
“Dude you’re too young for that! Focus on school and time will come for weight lifting. Don’t be in a rush!” one user wrote.
“PLEASE stop training at the gym,” commented another. “Go jogging or something, thats ok but no weights.”
But not everyone thought Cruz was too young to be working out in that way, particularly with his older brother supervising.
“Leave the kid alone, he’s with his brother, he’s fine,” one fan wrote. While another added: “Why does there need to be a set age to start, people go to the gym as a hobby too you know.”
The how young is too young to work out debate is something that has divided parents. According to statistics from Atomik research nearly half of the nation (42%) think that age 12 is too young to be working out.
That figure includes the 25% who would think even age 14-16 is too young.
Just over a quarter (28%) of the 1008 UK adults questioned say its irresponsible parenting for kids to be in the gym as children’s bodies are still developing and growing.
On the other end of the argument, a third say it’s positive in comparison to the high levels of childhood obesity and 26% think it’s normal and healthy and children should be physically active.
One person who backs children working on their fitness is Daniel Herman, the Founder of sports nutrition brand, Bio-Synergy.
“Subject to it being supervised I think that children should exercise daily, whether this playing tag in the playground or doing something more formal such gymnastics, swimming, football, martial arts etc,” he explains.
“Unlike in the 70s when I grew up where TV was a luxury, more and more children are spending time in front of a screen and have access to a wide range of unsuitable drink & food. Not only does exercise improve wellbeing, but it has a social dynamic and hopefully paves the way for a healthier and happier adulthood.”
But isn’t weight lifting a step too far? “Depending on the age of the child weight lifting may not be appropriate due to risk of injury, that said if properly supervised and structured it can certainly be beneficial. There are plenty of types of exercise and activity that all children can participate in, whether that be competitively or for fitness or recreation,” Daniel continues.
“My children both love exercise and often join when I am doing press-ups or join my wife for runs. They recently took part in a 5km obstacle trace, where my six year old son, despite losing his shoes early on in the mud completed it and now wants to do another one.”
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