According to studies, only one in three children engage with physical activity every day. The irresistible allure of computers, smart phones, video games and television being the culprit for most of the time.
While these sedentary entertainment choices might help children relieve stress to some extent, they can’t replace physical activity, which is necessary for children to lead a heathy lifestyle.
Why being physically active is important for children?
Regular physical activity is vital to a child’s development and a healthy life.
Being physically active:
- Helps to maintain a healthy body weight.
- Promotes healthy growth and development.
- Strengthens the heart and improves cardiovascular performance.
- Improves posture, flexibility, balance and movement.
- Helps build strong muscles and bones.
- Reduces blood sugar levels, thus decreasing the risk of developing diabetes.
- Reduces the amount of fat and cholesterol in blood.
- Improves overall stamina and energy levels.
Besides these benefits, being physically active and fit will automatically make your child feel and look better, eventually boosting their self-confidence and self-esteem.
Now, let’s move on to some effective ways parents can encourage their children to be more physically active.
Skip the school bus ride
It is, of course, not a necessity as there are many other ways to promote physical activity but it is a good idea to walk your child to school instead of having them take the school bus.
That simple switch will help your child to not only indulge in some physical activity but also break free from morning sloth and feel more energised.
Make it a family routine
Most kids tend to spend their time after school in sedentary activities like watching TV, sitting in front of computers or laptops and playing video games. While it’s not completely wrong to indulge in such activities as they help children relax and unwind, it is important that your child does at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day.
Doing some sort of physical activity as a family such as a walk after dinner, will allow your kid to enjoy physical exercise more. By watching their parents, siblings or other family members being physically active, children will also realise the importance of staying active and fit and will try to be active themselves.
Get kids involved in household chores
Some children may be too shy, reluctant or simply uninterested in any kind of outdoor activities. By having your child participate in outdoor household chores like watering plants, sweeping pathways, raking leaves and cleaning the garbage, you can make physical activity seem more fun and encourage them to get outdoors more.
So that’s it.
Do not forget to provide your child with right nutrition after rigorous physical activity. Healthy muesli bars, granola bites, chia health bars and trail mix are some go-to choices to treat your little one and restore their energy tanks.