All too often in life, exercise gets pushed to the bottom of a To-Do list, taking a back seat to social engagements and some much needed rest and relaxation. But it’s important to strike up a balance between the running joke of missing the gym again and a night in front of the TV watching Netflix.
If you struggle to find the motivation after a long day, then maybe it’s time for a fresh perspective.
You may have seen a recent post about our very passionate and determined daughter riding her bike for the first time, and it was such a happy moment for us all. It certainly got me thinking about exercise and the many, many benefits it can bring for children.
With the rise of the digital age lending itself well to ventures such as this blog, and everyone having access to the internet on smartphones, it also means that youngsters are less inclined to go outside and play with their friends after school like we used to when we were kids. Instead, we are inundated with phone apps, social media and multi-player online games that are occupying our children’s time.
While schools certainly do their part in encouraging active learning and play – it’s easy to lose count of how many times I have washed P.E. kits – there are some schools out there that are going one step further.
Playground equipment when I was at school was limited painted games and courts on concrete and some bats and balls and maybe a skipping rope – but these days, you are more likely to find climbing frames and play equipment to get children moving – which is pretty wonderful if you think about it! Look at this for more of an idea.
After school clubs are as popular as ever, and plenty of kids are involved in football, gymnastics and martial arts – but there is still room for parents to lead by example, too.
There are so many benefits to exercise, and even more so for children. Let’s take a look!
- Improved fitness levels
- Improved self-esteem and confidence
- Sleeping better
- More energy
- Improved concentration and academic achievements
- Improved communication
- Improved motor skills and co-ordination
- Healthier lifestyle
- Opportunity to make new friends
- Work better in teams
These benefits apply for both adults and children – but can you imagine the heights the next generation could reach if they were able to concentrate easier at school and absorb more information?
While it isn’t always easy to motivate children that are feeling less than up for being active outside of the school playground, it’s easier to do when you get involved, too.
- Why not ditch the car and walk to school wherever possible? Or walk to the local shop instead of jumping in the car.Make it more enjoyable with bikes or scooters
- Family walks in the evening, after-dinner and at the weekend – why not write a list of things to spot on the way? Or take a Frisbee and a ball for when you get there
- Walking a family dog if you have one
- Organise a trip to the local swimming pool for exercise that’s fun with a capital F
With so many ways to help your children become more active,you might be surprised at just how easy it will be to build into your every day life, so why not give it a go? You might even find you benefit from it,too. The best part is you don’t even need to go to the gym – and you can start right now – no matter what the weather! Make exercise a family activity and reap the rewards while making memories.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.