Encouraging your children to live an active and healthy lifestyle isn’t just about turning off the television and pushing them outside to play. Educating them around the reasons that they need to be healthy, and then offering constructive and fun environments in which they can play and exercise safely is the key. Too many young kids are not fulfilling even a small percentage of their exercise requirements in a week, and it could have terrible consequences further down the line. Here are a few ideas how to encourage your child to enjoy an active lifestyle.
Start walking more
Walking is a great way to get exercise, but it doesn’t have to seem like a chore. When a child is used to walking, they will not question it. Whether it’s walking to school, to the store, or to their friend’s’ houses, even half an hour a day can make a significant difference to their overall health. Walking together when they’re young gives you a chance to bond, but also enables them to ask questions about the world around them, and you can even use the opportunity to discuss road safety. As they get older, they’ll be so used to walking that they will walk without even considering the alternatives.
Take adventurous holidays
Taking holidays together as a family and having some adventurous fun can be a great way to show kids that being active is enjoyable. Canoeing, cycling, surfing, abseiling, and ziplining are all brilliant fun for kids, and great exercise too. Family kayaking adventures are also a fun way for mum and dad to get involved in a more active lifestyle too. You don’t need to go that far afield – there are plenty of brilliant outdoors centers in Canada, and obviously some fantastic scenery too.
Encourage them to join a sports club
Regular exercise surrounded by peers of their own age when they’re younger can be a really confidence boosting experience, and it’s also more likely to encourage them to pursue an active lifestyle as they get older too. A five-a-side football team, hockey, netball, or badminton are all great sports for youngsters to get involved in.
Head outside in good weather
When the sun comes out, rather than letting them stay in front of their computer games, encourage them to get their bikes or skateboards out and head out for a ride. If this is done from a young age, they’re far more likely to associate good weather with being outside and exercising, and it’s a trend they’ll choose to carry on.
Be a great role model
Finally, but most importantly, the most effective way to encourage an active lifestyle in your kids is by being the role model they need. If they see you cycling to work, going for a jog, or you go on active family holidays together, they’re going to associate an active lifestyle with their normal, everyday life, and it becomes natural for them to join in with you. Now spring’s here, it’s the perfect time to pick up those activities levels and get outside.
How do you encourage your kids to keep an active lifestyle?