444 IDEAL HOME LIFE
tilling out development during the entire period. The latter is likely to be more vigorous in youth, though very likely not in adult life. But in the first case much vitality is consumed in the process of growth, and there is not much energy to spare. Young people of this type, of either sex, should not be forced too much, either in their school work or in excessive physical exertion, whether the latter takes the form of. prolonged and arduous manual labor as on a farm or in a factory, or excesses in athletics. During puberty there are important physiological changes, especially requiring healthful conditions. Along with appropriate exercise there should be plenty of sleep and open air life.
Guard Against Weakness
At this particular time any bodily weaknesses are apt to • become prominent, and to be manifested in such defects as weak back, stoop shoulders, spinal curvature, flat chest, weak ankles, tendency to flat-foot and the general faulty carriage that tends to compress the digestive and other organs and interfere with their functions. But also, because of the rapid growth of youth, these conditions yield quickly to the corrective influence of exercise. Those naturally delicate or inclined to be inactive, and thus most subject to such defects, should especially have systematic exercise for this purpose, whether they get other exercise in the form of outdoor pastimes or not. This applies to both sexes alike.
Exercises for Trunk
It is not important at this age to strive for developing the arms and legs, except as such development comes naturally. Rather they should specialize on exercises for the back, chest, abdomen and trunk generally, so as to strengthen the internal parts, acquire a good carriage and overcome any defects. All bending, body twisting and stretching exercises will be particularly valuable at this time for girls as well as for boys.