Laila Ali is a professional athlete, advocate for healthy living, and mother of two adorable children who shine for the camera.

In a recent interview with Health Corner the boxer said that kids should have their dose of sports and other outdoor activities. Ali states,”I was not interested in sports as a kid because I just wanted to do my own thing. Grow up fast and that didn’t include sports. And I think a lot of it had to do with the fact that my mother who I lived with didn’t really push me in that direction. What I know about children and having them be active in sports is that it helps them not only be healthy and fit it also helps them do better in school and it helps them be less likely to get into trouble, it helps you with your confidence your self esteem. Also idle time is not a good thing. It wasn’t for me.”

As a mother of two, 3-year-old Curtis Jr. and 10-month-old Sydney, Laila is a strong advocate for healthy choices in youth. As she explains, “To see kids that are walking around overweight and you know it’s going to cause problems for them in the future. And they are just going to be kids and it’s up to us as adults and as parents to guide them in the right direction and make sure that they have healthy options in the house and make sure that they’re not spending all their time in front of the TV or the video games.”

Although she is an athlete, Ali does not limit the activities of children to sports only. According to Laila, “There are many ways for us to be active. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a sport, it can be dance team, it can be cheerleading. It just needs to be something that makes you work with your mind and your body – something that you enjoy.”

Photos: Laila Ali

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