Kids benefit greatly from participating in sporting activities, in school and at home. Exercise keeps them healthy and helps them to sleep better at night, which can be a real help during stressful exams. The trouble is a lot of kids don’t do enough exercise. In fact some kids don’t do any exercise at all, so the more effort you put into encouraging your kids to take some exercise the better it is for them.
The best way to encourage kids to be as active as possible is to lead by example. Your kids are hardly likely to bother playing sports and enjoying keep-fit activities if the only exercise you take is a walk to the pub on a Saturday night. If you place high importance on staying fit and healthy, your children will be more inclined to have a go at sports. Hopefully, if you both enjoy the same sports, you can do them together.
Limit Screen Time
Most kids spend way too much time glued to computers, games consoles and tablets. There is nothing wrong with spending a small amount of time playing computer games and chatting to friends on social networking sites, but if that’s all they ever do outside of school, it is not good for their health. Active kids are healthier in body and mind, so restrict their screen time and encourage them to try a few sports or more active pursuits.
Make Outdoors Pursuits a Family Activity
One way of forcing your kids to be more active is to drag them out of the house, kicking and screaming, for activity days out. Cycling is a good activity the whole family can try—in both summer and winter. Alternatively, go for long walks in places of natural beauty and teach the kids about nature at the same time. Swimming is another year round activity that you can do as a family. Kids of all ages love to play in the water, so make time for a family swim every weekend.
Research Interesting Sports to Try
If your kids are not interested in ordinary sports such as cycling or football, ask them if there is anything more interesting they would like to have a go at. Perhaps they have a secret desire to try kickboxing or modern dance. If they do, don’t dismiss the idea. Instead, capitalize on their enthusiasm and find a way of making it happen. The more they want to do it, the more likely they are to stick at their chosen sport.
Encourage Them to Play Sports at School
Too many kids duck out of sports at school. This is a mistake because school is the perfect place to have a go at new sports in a safe environment. If your child’s school uses an artificial grass playground and sports field instead of a natural grass one, there is no reason why they can’t play sports all year round, so do your best to encourage them to participate in after-school team sports.
Don’t let your children spend all of their free time on games consoles and computers. It might be the easy option, but in the long run it will damage their health.
Shruti Vaghe is a freelance blogger who is currently writing for Rollout Grass, leaders of best artificial grass in Perth. She has a very dynamic personality and she enjoys trying new things. You can follow her on Twitter @ShrutiVaghe