Former Olympic gold medalist and Canberra mum Louise Dobson wants all children to have an hour of "huff and puff" every day.
That's why she and her son Max Milin will be participating in the annual Walk Safely to School Day on Friday.
The former hockey player proudly supports and participates in the event every year to create awareness of the importance of an active, healthy lifestyle.
"Overweight kids are becoming common, with one in four being overweight," Dobson said.
"If we can get them into good habits, it's going to help with things like limiting heart disease and diabetes as they get older."
It is an event targeted towards ACT and NSW schools, encouraging students and families to walk to school to help promote physical health, road safety and fitness.
"There's studies that show active kids are smarter kids. If we make the effort to get out and be active, we can think clearer and have better sleeping patterns, creating a lot of great habits, for our health, wellbeing, and for cognitive and physical performance," Dobson said.
Dobson realised the importance of regularly exercising and keeping fit at a young age growing up in Shepparton, Victoria, in order to pursue her dreams of going to the Olympics.
Dobson's career highlights include winning the hockey gold medal at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, claiming the gold medal at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur and receiving bronze at the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games.
She also represented Australia internationally in the Olympics in Athens, 2004, and the Hockey World Cup in 2004, scoring 58 goals for Australia.
With the possibility of an Australian Olympic Games in Brisbane in 2032, she said it was a good opportunity to inspire the next generation of athletes.
"As a young girl at the age of eight, I had the dream to become an Olympian. If we can get kids here to start visualising those dreams, having a home Olympics then hand-in-hand with active campaigns, it all comes with a really strong message for active kids to become motivated," Dobson said.
Despite parents being concerned for their children's safety walking to school, this initiative reinforces and encourages children and their parents to discuss road rules, stranger danger and healthy lifestyle choices to ensure their safety.
"Starting early is really good in terms of long term safety of children and enabling them to be independent," she said.
"Kids need to be doing an hour of huff and puff a day to be more active, so if we can encourage the kids, even just to walk part-way to school, ride part of the way and walk the rest, I think it's a great thing for them to do. So take the dog or grab a friend and make it a date to walk to school together this Friday."