More kids are sedentary now because of physical restrictions brought by the pandemic. The common venues where they could exercise are closed to prevent the spread of the virus. But the lack of physical exercise can cause several problems, such as excess weight gain, body pain, and bad posture, among others.
We’re in a crucial time when good health is a must. Thus, you must ensure that your kids not only eat healthily but also stay active. Ideally, they need to exercise at least 60 minutes a day.
How to Get Children Moving
Getting your kids to exercise may be difficult. They probably prefer lounging on the sofa or watching videos on their phones over doing something physically exhausting. But as a parent, you need to make sure that your kids stay healthy. And that includes making them exercise.
One strategy you can use is laying restrictions on their screen time. You can set a time window when your kids cannot use their phones, computers, and TV. This window will be dedicated to a type of physical activity instead. You can also try channeling their competitive side by offering a reward if they complete 60 minutes of exercise.
The most important thing is that you exercise with them. Time passes by fast, and soon enough, they’ll be busy fulfilling their requirements for senior high school and then moving on to a university. It’s best to cherish moments when you can do things together, including exercise.
Here are some physical activities that you and your kids can do together both outdoors and indoors.
Walking is the most basic form of exercise you and your kids can do. But since this is an outdoor activity, you need to ensure that you and your kids follow social distancing protocols and wear masks.
An hour of walking will help kids burn up to 198 calories, which can help with weight management. You can walk leisurely around the neighborhood for half an hour to start, especially if your kids were not active at all for many months. And once your kids get used to this physical activity, you can try walking for an hour or even more.
If walking around seems boring for your kids, you can include going to a store to buy something to give a sense of purpose to the activity. Or you can take the dog with you if you have one.
If you don’t want your kids to go out, one outdoor activity that you and your kids can do within the vicinity of your home is gardening. It can help them burn as many calories as walking.
Your kids can help with weeding your garden, watering your plants, or perhaps rearranging your potted plants. Besides making your kids more physically healthy, gardening can also teach them valuable lessons, such as patience and hard work.
You and your kids can also try yoga. Many instructional videos on the internet can guide you through the process. Make sure to start easy so that you and your kids don’t overwork your muscles.
Yoga focuses on stretching and meditation and has several benefits. For example, it can help in weight management, improve posture, and promotes good blood circulation. Yoga can also help improve your kids’ ability to focus.
One study found that gamifying physical activities and offering rewards can increase children’s willingness to participate. So if you have video game consoles at home, you can also use them to encourage your kids to exercise.
Wii Sports offers various games that need full-body movements, such as tennis, boxing, baseball, and bowling. You can also try the good old-fashioned dance games, like Dance Revolution and Just Dance.
Speaking of dancing, it’s a great way to exercise as well. Dancing is a form of aerobic exercise. If your kids do this activity even for at least 30 minutes a day, they will feel more energized. Dancing will also help them improve their body coordination, muscle strength, and bone strength.
You and your kids can follow dance videos online. Some educators swear by GoNoodle as the platform provides short dance tutorials that are easy for kids to follow.
Exercise is an important health component that improves children’s well-being. And this is why you need to encourage your children to be physically active as much as possible. But make sure that they also have fun while doing the activities. After all, if your kids enjoy what they’re doing, they’ll be more encouraged to do it again.