- Make physical activity a fun experience so that they are inclined to participate.
- Lead by example and be physically active yourself.
- Leverage technology for interactive and engaging workouts.
- Enroll your child in team sports or group classes such as ballet, karate, swimming lessons, or soccer clinics.
- Limit screen time to two hours a day or less, as the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends.
As parents, it is vital to promote physical activity among our children, especially during their early years. But it’s becoming increasingly difficult with the advent of technology and the number of hours children spend on screens.
The good news is that there are some simple ways to encourage your little kids to be more active. You just have to be creative in how you approach it and be consistent in promoting healthy habits. So read on to find more ways to get children excited about physical activity.
Make physical activity a fun-filled experience.
Children would always choose playtime over anything else, so you must make physical activity fun and exciting. The goal is to make them fall in love with using their bodies. Some creative ways to make physical activity more enjoyable are playing games involving physical exercise, like catch, hide and seek, and treasure hunts. Invest in outdoor play equipment like balls, bikes, jump ropes, sandboxes, or swings.
Lead by example
You cannot overemphasize the importance of leading by example. Children learn more from what adults do than they say, which is why you must work towards being a role model to your kids. They will likely follow in your footsteps if they see you being active. Activities like running, hiking, swimming, and even walking the dog are all excellent ways of demonstrating the importance of staying active.
Use technology as an aid
While excessive screen time isn’t healthy, technology can help make your child more active. Some mobile applications like Sworkit Kids, GoNoodle, and Just Dance Kids can help create interactive and engaging workouts for children. You can also use wearables like Fitbit Ace to help track physical activity and encourage your child to achieve goals.
Take advantage of communal physical activities
Communal physical activities are an excellent way to encourage children to be more active. You can involve your child in team sports like football, basketball, baseball, or swimming. You can also enroll them in group classes where they can interact with other children and learn new techniques. Some of the activities you can enroll them in include:
Karate classes are another excellent option for group classes for kids. Karate is a martial art that teaches self-defense, discipline, and physical fitness. Children participating in karate classes learn to develop techniques, martial arts skills, body control, and confidence.
Karate classes can also improve children’s focus and teach them to respect their elders and peers.
Ballet lessons are an excellent choice of group class for children of all ages. Ballet is a form of dance that requires discipline, focus, and flexibility, skills children can develop with regular practice.
You can choose ballet classes depending on the age of your child. For instance, 3-year-olds can start with mini ballet dance classes where they can learn basic ballet steps. Ballet is a fun way to get children excited about physical activity while they learn new skills and develop self-confidence.
Swimming can be a fun and refreshing activity for children to engage in and a lifesaving skill. Swimming lessons can provide several health benefits and develop skills like breath control, coordination, and balance. Children also learn water safety and can become proficient swimmers.
Soccer is a favorite sport worldwide, and it is no surprise that kids love playing it. Soccer clinics are an excellent option for learning new skills, developing athletic competence, and building social skills. Soccer clinics allow children to develop teamwork, sportsmanship, and communication skills.
Limit Screen Time
It is essential to limit screen time if you want your child to be more physically active. Children who spend long hours on screens during the day are less likely to engage in physical activity. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting screen time to two hours or less daily for children ages three and up.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, there is always a way to encourage little kids to be more active. Making physical activity fun and involving your child in it, leading by example, using technology, taking advantage of communal physical activities, and limiting screen time are all effective ways. Investing time and energy in these activities will raise healthy and physically active children who will grow into healthy adults.