Muscle Maven – 31 December 2015

Damian 'The Muscle Maven' Murray (photo by snhfoto)

OK – I’m sorry. I got caught up with Christmas and totally forgot to get this post up. Remembered today and Sean agreed to get it up (the post)…

I really don’t envy children today. While I think that technology has enriched many parts of our lives there is one area I think it is slowly killing. Playing. Children would be rushing out to see each other and show their Christmas presents to one another. Groups playing on new bikes, skateboards, adventure toys, roller skates – the list goes on. Now presents are based around tablets, phones (my son got a new phone for Christmas) etc. Present discussion happens on an Instagram chat. No physical interaction. No actual discussion.

It is something that has bothered me for a while. Don’t get me wrong – I am not some kind of perfect parent. I thought that tablets etc were great and got my son playing with one from a fairly young age (something I now regret) – finding it cool that he could use a tablet so easily. Now you look around and see youngsters glued to a screen while parents eat dinner, shop or even just walking along. Talking to my son when he is using his phone (not speaking on it) is painful. I am almost convinced we are raising a generation of ADHD children as they cannot focus on one thing and are constantly flicking from one source of attention to another (although as I type this my son is reading a book and it is heaven to see). Perhaps in another 10 years we will see the fallout of this.

Add to this mix the addictive power of Social Media. This will be the first generation that have grown up with the ever present Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and so on. The main problem with this (as I see it) is they have not been taught in any way the power of Social Media. Throwaway comments that can be taken out of context, screen grabbed and then shared. Conversations that have been faked. Pictures you regret that circulate around the World.

I have taken great care to try and educate my son how to use Social Media in a responsible manner. Ignore those that are hungry for attention (we all know the types of posts). Don’t brag (we let him know that we had booked a holiday to Florida on Xmas day – he didn’t tell his friends on Instagram as he knew how it would look to others reading it), don’t bully and be wary of things you type as they can be taken out of context and you have to be prepared that they may exist online forever.

Perhaps there needs to be better education in Schools about this. There is the general ‘Online Safety’ stuff that all children are made aware of now (I have had to make a report to CEOP due to inappropriate contact with my son on an app call KIK) but I think it needs to go beyond this. Lessons not just in online safety but online responsibility. As a parent I take this seriously and am able to look through all of my sons messages, Social Media accounts etc. Luckily I have taken time to teach him how to use these platforms responsibly (and also to alert me to anything inappropriate) I rarely feel the need to check. Many parents don’t (and I know this from things I have seen) and feel that the safety information that their children have been taught is enough. It isn’t.


It seems that all of the supermarkets have jumped onto the fitness bandwagon. Sainsburys have a cracking deal on cheap iron (Tesco’s are doing plastic) Kettlebells. Each one has a neoprene cover. No links as only available in store.


I don’t think I have ever mentioned this site before. Great deals sorted by category. Check it out.


Wouldn’t be deals without the omnipresent MuscleFood. Checkout the New Year hamper.

Damian Murray - Author