Three Easy Ways to Get Kids Moving
Every Kid Healthy Week™ is observed during the last week in April each year to celebrate the commitment schools make to help improve kids’ health and wellness. This is the perfect time for parents to also reinforce the importance of exercising on a regular basis.
Physical activity increases life expectancy, helps control weight and decreases the risk of heart disease and other chronic illnesses. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends children (ages 6+) get at least an hour of physical activity each day. This should include mostly moderate or vigorous aerobic activity, as well as muscle- and bone-strengthening activity at least three days a week.
Your kids don’t have to be involved in organized sports to get more exercise. There are plenty of ways to get kids moving, no matter what their age or interests. The key is to find activities your child likes. Exercise together to show your kids that physical activity is a priority for everyone and can be fun. The best role model for your kids is you—if you make healthy lifestyle choices, they’re more likely follow in your footsteps.
Here are three easy ways to get the kids (and you!) moving more:
- Play more. Exercise doesn’t have to be structured and should not be something to be dreaded, especially for kids. Moving more should be all about playing more. Fly a kite, go on a scavenger hunt, run through a sprinkler or play tag.
- Find activities that fit your child’s interests. If your child loves to dance, turn on some music and have a dance party. Have kids that love to explore nature? Go on a hike to collect leaves or rocks.
- Plan active family outings. Substitute an evening of TV with a trip to the playground. Explore a local park. Spend an afternoon at the zoo. Get kids involved in planning activities so they look forward to doing them.
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Date Last Reviewed: February 1, 2018
Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor
Medical Review: Julie Halvorsen, DO, FAAP