Physical activity is an important part of total health for people of all ages. For children, especially, the benefits of regular exercise are innumerable. Physically active kids have been shown to perform better in school and have a lower chance of becoming overweight and suffering from a number of other serious health issues as they get older. Getting kids in the habit of being physically active at an early age sets them up for a lifetime of healthy choices and can even help improve their self esteem. Getting kids to exercise regularly may be much easier than it seems. Here are some fun ways to get your kids to exercise without having it seem like work!
Encourage Them To Play Outdoor Games
Any parent knows that kids naturally have a lot of energy and like to be social. Use some of this energy by encouraging them to play outside. Take them to the park and let them play on the playground, ride a bike or a scooter. If you are with a bigger group of kids, teach them a game that can be played as a group, such as capture the flag or freeze tag. The more time kids spend outdoors, the more likely they are to be naturally physically active and to develop ways in which to find physical activities for themselves to do.
Cultivate Their Love For Sports
Team sports are a wonderful way for kids to get used to physical activity as well as to learn wonderful life skills like working together with others and doing their best in order to help the team. If your child is interested in professional sports, nurture their interest by setting up a basketball hoop in the yard or playing catch with them. This can also be a great way for you to get some physical activity in yourself, and for you to rediscover the sports you loved as a child.
Help Them Put Together a Dance Performance
Kids who are not as interested in sports can still be physically active. Dancing and gymnastics are both wonderful forms of physical activity that have a number of great benefits, including strength and flexibility. Encourage your kids to put on dance recitals, and be an audience member or offer to help them find music and costumes. Tell them to make up a story that goes along with the dance they are putting together and help them build an area in the yard where they can perform.
Explore Their Love For Nature
Combine their curiosity for nature by going on nature walks together. Talk to them about the different plants and animals you see, and encourage them to point out any trees or wildlife that you encounter. Read up on the area before you embark on your walk, and get them to ask questions about where you are going and what types of plants and animals thrive naturally. Get them in the habit of taking note of their surroundings and compare the area you’re hiking in to other areas you have explored.