How to get your little one to stay active and healthy?
Photo by Ben Hershey on Unsplash
With child obesity rates developing into a significant problem in this country, it is more important than ever to find ways to keep your children moving and healthy. This can be a challenge for busy parents juggling the demands of work and raising a family. Here are five easy ways that you can get your little ones to stay active and healthy.
Limit screen time
Sometimes the biggest barrier to your child’s physical activity level is the amount of time that they spend staring at a screen. Every parent understands the struggle over screen time. From a young age, kids are now indoctrinated into the wonder of screens, particularly tablets and smartphones.
However, the more addicted that they become to their screens, the harder that it will be to encourage them to get out and move their body. You can help to support good exercise habits in your children by limiting the amount of time that they can spend watching television or with an electronic device. Once they break this bad habit, they will naturally be drawn to physical activity as a way to pass the time.
Be a role model
The best way that you can support your child in all of their activity goals is to be a good role model for them. Your child is more likely to want to participate in a variety of activities if they see you making them an integral part of your own life.
Young kids are little sponges who will read your attitudes and apply that perception to their framework of thought. If they see you enjoying your daily workout, they are going to be more apt to want to participate. Conversely, if you are always complaining about having to go to the gym, it will be no surprise that they will also adopt these negative attitudes of exercise.
Not all activity has to be physical in nature. Encouraging your child to pick up a new hobby will support the effort to stimulate both their mind and their body at the same time. Once your child finds something that they are passionate about, you will not be able to hold them back.
If your child is showing an interest in athletics, you may consider browsing an online sports card shop to see if anything sparks their interest. Or perhaps you have a budding artist on your hands who will appreciate a new easel and set of paints?
Make it fun
Your child will be more likely to stay active if they find the activities fun and engaging. There are numerous ways that you can do this. Making exercise a family affair is a great way to involve everyone and provide accountability.
Setting aside a day for fun family exercise will encourage everyone to participate. Or consider signing up your child for a new sport. This is usually more successful if you have a child who thrives on being social and meeting new friends.
Provide the right toys
The right toys can make all of the difference when it comes to encouraging your child to get off of the couch and move their bodies. In addition to creating a safe environment for play, you also need to provide toys that support movement.
Good choices for young children include big bouncy balls, jump ropes, tricycles, and sporting equipment. Setting up a playset in your backyard will provide endless hours of fun. Your child will be getting exercise without them even realizing it.
With a little creativity and diligence, you can ensure that your child adopts an active lifestyle. Setting these habits up at a young age is a gift that your child will have as they grow older.