Getting Your Kids More Active
Disclosure: This is a guest post, meaning I am not to author nor do I take credit f
By: Darci Maxwell
Child obesity is on the rise here in America. Over the past 30 years, the rate has nearly doubled! It is important that you help your child stay healthy and strong by teaching them to eat right and exercise regularly. Here are some tips and tricks to getting your children off the couch and exercising!
Don’t just expect your child to exercise on their own, especially if they never see you working on your physical fitness. Turn exercise into a time that you two get to spend together. Go for walks, play sports outside, and just have fun!
Join a Team
Sign your child up for a local little league team so that they have a set time each week that they will go outside and exercise with their team. Ask your child what sport they would like to try and then sign them up! Remember that some sports will require additional equipment such as cleats or a mouth guard (this blog states that your child should use a mouth guard every time they play sports), so make sure that you take that into account when you sign your kids up.
Walk to School and Friend’s Houses
If you live close enough to the school, take a morning walk with your kids to drop them off rather than driving them to the school. The same goes for their friend’s houses. When your kids are old enough, you can go ahead and let them walk themselves to school, just make sure that they know the way and that they have the means to contact you in case they get lost.
Plan Active Family Outings
Plan less activities that require you to sit down for a few hours such as watching movies, and . plan more family activities that involve getting up and moving. For example, go roller skating together, go to the local recreation center for a day into pool, go hiking, go ice skating, or go for a picnic in the park.
Let Your Kids Play Pokemon Go
Pokemon Go isn’t as popular as it was when it first came out, but many people are still playing. Every day, take out your phone and let your kids play Pokemon Go while you walk around the neighborhood as a family. Pretty soon, they will be begging you to let them go outside and look for more of these critters.
Try Something New
Maybe soccer or football is not for your child. Try something a little outside of the box such as rock climbing, swimming, horseback riding, martial arts, etc. It will take time to figure out what works best for them, but it’s important to keep your kids moving to start a lifelong pattern of good habits. However, as you try new things, make sure that your child sticks with them for at least 2 weeks so that they really try it out instead of just giving up on the first day. For help finding your child’s “thing” check out this blog.
Limit Screen Time
Back in the good old days, kids would run around in their backyards or through parks and nearby fields simply because they had nothing better to do. With the rise of technology, kids become glued to their devices, rarely discovering what the great outdoors have to offer. In order to combat this, you have to limit your child’s screen time. Don’t let them have more than a 1-2 hours combined on a phone, tablet, or watching TV a day. It may be a wise idea to limit your own screen time as well; put down your phone and go outside and play with your child!
Reward Their Activity
If you are having a hard time getting your kids outside without an extra push, go ahead and give them a little motivation. If they are old enough, sit them down and create an exercise plan together. Determine rewards when they hit certain milestones such as 1 week of daily exercise or 1 month of daily exercise. If they are not old enough, you can set the rewards yourself. For most kids, turning screen time into a reward is very effective — allow them to play on any device for an hour if they complete a 30 minute exercise. Treats are also effective, but be careful that they don’t become too excessive, or the exercise they do won’t be enough to work off the calories.