Written By: Parenting Contributor, Prerna Malik, TheMomWrites.com
Nine-year old Craig has a lot to worry about. His pediatrician has informed his mom that Craig’s weight is in the higher percentile and his low energy levels are due to too much time indoors and less physical activity. Chances are high that Craig will grow up to be an overweight adult, unless he gets moving… fast.
Yes, it is unfortunate but true that most kids are growing up to a lifestyle packed with too much television and junk food and too little exercise and fruits. Exercise and physical activity have a ton of benefits for kids. According to the KidsHealth.org website http://kidshealth.org/parent/nutrition_center/staying_fit/active_kids.html#a_Benefits_of_Being_Active
- strong muscles and bones
- weight control
- decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes
- better sleep
- a better outlook on life
Do you want to give these amazing benefits to your kids? Here are some tips to help get your child moving and physically fit for 2013:
1. Have Dedicated Outdoors Time for the Family
Start by getting the family involved. In other words, it isn’t fair to expect your child to get outdoors and play around while you sit inside to watch a movie. Spend dedicated outdoor time with the kids and have fun as a family while getting fitter. Children need motivation to be out and once they discover that it is nicer outside than inside, they’ll be happier there on their own in any case. Plus, we’re sure you could benefit from the running around and fresh air as well. Right?
2. Sign up for Sports
Does your tween or teen enjoy a sport? Sign them up for some classes. Having scheduled, paid-for time for outdoor sports will ensure that they get out of the house and get physically active as well. Preschoolers, too, can join a class. My 5-year old, for instance, goes for tennis lessons and absolutely loves them. Not only is she outdoors running around and having tons of fun, she’s with other kids of her age group and socializing too!
3. Focus on Fun
Don’t make physical activity a chore. Keep the focus on fun. Let it be enjoyable, flexible, fluid but a definite part of your everyday schedule. Whether it is picking up bicycles and cycling around the block or spending time kicking a ball or going for yoga classes, let kids have the most fun with activity and you’ll never have to pester them to shut the television and go outside to play.
4. Choose Age-Appropriate Activities
Finally, as with everything else, make sure you’re not pushing your kids into activities that aren’t right for their age or physical development. Whether you have a toddler or a tween, tailor physical activities to meet your child’s interest, age and physical development. Once you have those covered, you can be sure that kids will be active and moving, and having a blast too!
How will YOU be helping your child to get moving and physically fit for 2013? Share with me in the comments.