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Encouraging Exercise in Children

Being a parent, there is a monumental task ahead in shaping the child. This also takes into the account the child’s habit of exercise as well as activity which can be carried out in a safe manner, should be productive as well as it should be enjoyable for the child. Physical activity is of utmost importance to the mind and body of the child.

It is said that at least 60 minutes a day of physical activity would help in positive growth of the child wherein it can help to develop and make the bones stronger along with the muscles. It also helps in building endurance and maintaining of a healthy weight. There have been proofs which confirm that moderate to vigorous kind of physical activity will surely help in boosting the child’s thinking skills as well as prepare them physically for facing any challenges.

You can plan out time in your schedule for the child to get engaged in 60 minutes of physical activity every day. This need not be done all at one time, it can be broken down throughout the day such as 10 to 15 minutes broken down at four different time intervals.

You can follow the below mentioned tips to ensure that the child has positive activity.

  • Encouragement of active behaviour in the child. It would basically mean that as a parent one should limit the time children spend in front of the television screen, laptops, computers or tablets. The maximum recommended screen time is two hours per day after which the child can be involved in playing or get engaged in their family life. There can be times while going outside would not be an option to carry out any physical kind of activity in such cases you can also make the child play interactive video games which needs physical activity such as tennis, bowling, dancing or baseball. Now-a-days there are a lot of such interactive video games available online as well. But while doing so ensure that this is only an option and the child should not get addicted to only playing these video games.
  • Always encourage the act of togetherness while exercising. You can think of ways which you all can carry out as a family and at the same time can add up to the list of physical activity. You can go out for walks together either before or after meal, carry out yard work together, make household chores interesting to be carried out together as a family, or you can also have a weekly sports night.  Encourage your child to take part in certain household chores such as raking of the leaves, watering the plants, pulling off the weeds, cleaning the garage or sweeping. All of these simple looking mundane tasks should be made interesting and fun filled with the help of music. You as adults should also join them and get those tasks completed as a family since a child would learn from observing their parents.
  • We all are aware and time to time it has been reiterated that the child follows the footsteps of their parents hence the healthy habits of the child would start with you as a parent. If as a parent, you lead a positive as well as a healthy lifestyle then surely your child is going to watch it and follow the same even without being told to them. Be an active role model to your child. You as a parent should present the physical activity as being part of the important time for taking care of their body as well as health instead of just making it look like a chore. Let them know the repercussions of not taking care of their body so that they understand the importance.  Try to find out activities which you all enjoy and be active for at least 30 minutes a day and for five days a week. When the child observes that you are enjoying this time and also being active then they would also be very likely to incorporate the same kind of behaviour.

The question arises as to what can motivate the child? As we all are aware that carrying out a physical routine is actually beneficial for the child. Hence there are key things which one should be aware of while looking to motivate the kid;

  • Choose out the right kind of activities as per the age of the child since if we do not choose the one which they would like then they tend to get bored or frustrated quiet easily.
  • Provide plenty of opportunities for the kid to become active. Kids always prefer that the parents make out the activities easier for them by providing them with equipment’s and also taking them to the playgrounds as well as any other kind of active sports.
  • While choosing any kind of physical activity ensure that it should be fun loving for the kids. We all are aware that kids would not anything which does not involve the fun factor in it hence parents have to find in some fun factor in those activities.

When kids enjoy any kind of activity they would want to do more of it. Hence when they go about practicing any kind of skill such as whether it is swimming or it is regarding riding a cycle then it would help to improve their ability and also help them to feel accomplished mostly when someone praises their effort or gets noticed. These kind of feel good factors would help the kid in wanting to continue their activity while other members try it out. Pre-schoolers would need play as well as exercise which can help them to continue developing their important motor skills involving kicking or throwing a ball. When we talk about school age kids they are mostly involved in spending most of their time in front of the screens hence making it a challenge for their parents to identify the right task. Hence it is all about identifying the right task and making it fun for them.