Physical activities are the last thing in every kid’s mind when engrossed in television and using gadgets. As a parent, it is my job to provide them opportunities for physical activities. This article will tell you the helpful tips I found and used to motivate my kids to move and be productive.
Physical activities for kids at home:
- Household chores
- Obstacle courses
Kids must enjoy these physical activities, so you don’t have to force them. This article will guide you on how to make your kids do physical activities voluntarily. It will also tackle the benefits kids could get in doing these activities at home.
Why Is There A Lack of Physical Activities?
It is easy for parents to let our kids watch TV or to have them immersed in a gadget. Having them behave and not litter around the house is a welcome moment for all parents. Devices have become a modern pacifier. It might be a blessing for parents at the moment, but it will have unpleasant consequences in the future.
Kids who prefer not to play or move around can suffer from obesity, heart disease, or mental health problems. It is also proven that it can impact their overall motivation to work harder and may impact their academic performance.
They can also adapt bad habits from what they watch, especially if parents are not present to guide them. It can adversely affect the parents’ relationship with them. No parents want their kids to choose gadgets over them.
Children’s attention turns on digital alternatives to sate their restless minds and body. Sometimes, they just don’t have any choice. It is the job of every parent to provide the kids with opportunities to become physically active.
Things to Consider in Planning Physical Activities
All healthy kids are restless. Parents might want to consult a doctor if they are not. We must appreciate their restlessness rather than neglect it. But, there are also things to consider in planning physical activities.
Be Mindful Of Their Age and Ability
Activities should be age-appropriate. Getting the kids bored at the first minute is something parents must avoid. For toddlers, activities should help them develop their motor skills. Parents need to know that toddlers have a short attention span and can’t understand complex rules. The activities for them should be simple yet engaging.
Elementary school children need more challenging activities. They love running, jumping, and things that will make them move around. They can be competitive too. Harmless competition can make activities more enticing for them.
Parents need to consider the kids’ physical traits and fitness personalities. Some children may want to join, but they do not want to exert too much effort. Some may not want to engage in any physical activity; they needed more encouragement. Parents can persuade them by joining the activities themselves.
Know Your Kids
Kids’ interests or hobbies must also be a factor in choosing the activities. Integrating your kid’s interests may persuade your kid to join.
For families with more than one kid, it is advisable to make them do physical activities together. Parents need to consider their individuality. It can be challenging but more rewarding in the end. Aside from a healthier body, the bond that the siblings can form will carry on until they grow up.
Most importantly, parents need to know their children when planning. It was assumed that all parents do. But if not, they need to make an extra effort as their success in this endeavor largely depends on it.
Organizing Physical Activities
Routine physical activities should start at an early age. Toddlers are more predisposed to routine as they haven’t developed their own. They are much more dependent on their parents and do not have outside influences yet.
Duration of the Activities
According to experts, toddlers need at least three hours a day of physical activity. Children above age of five should engage in at least one hour of moderate to vigorous physical activity. Convince them also to do several hours of light physical activity each day.
The three hours a day recommended physical activity need not be continuous. Staggering the activities is actually more effective. It is not going to be too exhausting for them and make it feel like a routine and not an obligation.
Establish a Routine
Start by having them run around the house doing small chores. These can include bathing a pet or walk them around the yard. Watering plants can also be turned into an active physical activity for them. Make these routines after breakfast or upon waking up.
Organize a fixed recreation hour in a day where you can do exercises disguised as games. It could be before lunch time or after. Simon says, Dance Party or Hopscotch are games involving a lot of movement that will make your child sweat.
Kids can also be more enthusiastic about physical activity on an arranged play date. It can make these activities more interesting if they have someone their age do it with them. Organize at least once a week playdate and have activities that will interest all kids involved.
In the evening where all members of the family are present is the best time to gather together. After dinner, instead of watching TV, they can do a little wrestling or pillow fight. These can also give them a peaceful sleep.
The activities parents must plan should not be elaborate. Over complication can take out the fun. Kids always need to feel that these activities are games for them and not a chore, while it is a routine.
Physical Activities Suggestions
Kids are too lazy for exercise because they are boring. Repeating the same actions often are boring even for adults. The only way to make them stretch their bodies and flex their muscles is disguising exercise activities into games.
Games Kids Love
Races involving running activities are exciting for kids. This can be made more exciting, if you add little rewards for winners. It could be two to three- legged, crab-run race or skip rope race. Kids love to run at every chance they get. Plus, it always makes them drink water as they sweat a lot.
Additionally, running helps maintain a healthy weight, strengthen muscles and improve cardiovascular fitness. It can also improve their self-esteem because of the sense of achievement they get.
Obstacle Course can entice kids to take part in physical activities. Improvised furniture or ordinary things available at home can serve as a bridge, balance beam, or tubes. Throw in some puzzles and brain teasers for the varietyness of the task. It can benefit both physical and mental health through this.
Organize a dance party for the whole family. It is fun and it can burn a lot of calories as you sweat. It can be a friendly competition between the kids or dance your hearts out to the tune of favorite family music. You can even seek the aid of TV to learn the steps.
Household Chores Can Be Fun Too
Let the kids help in the household chores, like cleaning their room or running errands. Sweeping, dusting, throwing out the trash can make them sweat. Kids can enjoy the morning sun if they do some gardening early. Additionally, it teaches them how to be responsible and persevere in accomplishing tasks.
Parents should not be overprotective. It is common for kids to try and fail. Console them but never allow them to give up. Let their frustrations be the driving force to achieve something. Don’t forget to cheer for their achievements no matter how small it is. Besides, no parents want their kids on the couch engrossed in whatever is on your television and their gadgets.
Benefits of Physical Activities
Planned physical activities keep their bodies and mind healthy. While engaging in physical activities, kids are able to stretch their capabilities and discover more of themselves. In addition, these activities can teach the value of teamwork, acceptance of defeat, and social interaction.
How to encourage kids who do not want to do any physical activities at all? For physical activities to be enticing for them, parents need to know their child. Plan activities according to their likes and interests. If they like reading, role play their favorite books. If they like online games, make some building projects which are themed according to the games they like. Older kids are harder to convince, which is why it is important to start these routines at an early age.