I think many times we forget that our children have physical activity needs just as we do. Are we being good role models? I know some times I am not the best role model and others I am a great role model for my kids. So, to make sure kids get the proper activity I think we should consider the CDC’s guidelines which are particularly not difficult to follow.
First of all we need to make sure our kids are getting enough physical activity. Kids should have sixty minutes or more of physical activity daily. Simple things such as walking, running, riding bike, you know the things we used to do before the video games came around. Make sure three days a week it is vigorous activity such as walking. How about a game of hide and go seek? You remember the games we played outside, I have found once I introduced them to my kids they absolutely loved it. Remember you can do these things with your kids and get in your physical activity in as well.
We also need to consider muscle strengthening activities. Things such as gymnastics, and push ups are good options to strengthen muscles. I am sure you can think of many more activities such as those to help strengthen your child’s muscles. These should be done at least 3 days a week for 60 minutes or more.
Finally, we need to include bone strengthening activities. These activities should also be done 3 times a week for at least 60 minutes. Jumping rope and running are good examples.
If you noticed a lot of things overlap and easily can be a part of child’s daily life. Kids and adolescents have to meet the same guidelines, but they are going to of course be approached differently. Make sure you provide things that will encourage your child to play with things that encourage activity. Does your child have a bike, balls, skates or rollerblades and things such as those? You can get out ride your bike with your kids. Many places are incorporating walking trails in there communities, we should be taking advantage of those. The latest and greatest is Wii Fit, kids just think it is fun and don’t even think about the exercise, so it may be something you want to invest in for your family. We need to make these family efforts and start doing “old school” activities with our children.
The best gift we can give our kids is a healthy life. Too many kids are obese, have adult onset diabetes due to weight, and are being teased which ruins their self esteem and we need to help do our part in solving this problem. It is easy for us to get out motivate our kids to be active. Remember we are ALWAYS our child’s first and best teacher he will ever have.