MP Keith Martin is advocating a national turnoff day for children and adults.
That's turnoff, as in turn off the television and turn away from the computer once a week as a way to confront a dangerous trend of physical inactivity among Canada's children and youth.
"In our country, what is quite shocking is that for the first time in history the generation of our children today is expected to have a shorter lifespan than their parents," said Martin, a medical doctor, noting that such diseases as diabetes and cardiovascular problems are cropping up in young people.
"It's entirely preventable. It's just kids are not physically active. They're sitting down for an appalling length of time. We weren't designed to live like that as human beings.
"In fact, the average child will spend more than 40 hours a week - six hours a day on average - just watching television or playing video games."
So Martin, the Liberal MP for Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca, will present a motion in Parliament next week that the "House of Commons encourage the federal government to work with the provinces to promote a one-night a week TV/video game free night."
Martin's idea stems from last month's comprehensive report by advocacy group Active Healthy Kids Canada (AHKC), saying that a dismal 12 per cent of Canadian children are getting the recommended 90 minutes a day of physical activity.
The 2010 AHKC report card on physical activity for children and youth gave Canada's kids an "F" for screen time, since 90 per cent of children are spending too much time in front of TV, computer and video screens.
"Kids need to be active and parents need to lead by example by getting their children away from the TV and video games to engage in free play," said Martin.