How many of you have children? How many of you have Ipads, tablets, xboxs, playstations, wiis, computers, tv…etc.? How many hours would you say your child spends using one of these devices? How often do your kids get active? Are they involved in any sports or activities?
I think it is very easy for parents to just let their kids sit in front of the tv, or spend endless hours playing games on their tablets or gaming stations. I know I am guilty of it. If I’m having a busy day it keeps them occupied, and I don’t have to keep them from being “bored”.
Now, I understand it may not be in everyones’ budget to sign their child(ren) up for extra curriculars outside of the home. But, that certainly is not an excuse as to not encouraging them to get outside and “play”. Yes, I believe in that just sending the kids out the door and telling them to play is a good start. They will usually find things to keep themselves busy. And if you can, get out there and play with them! Go for walks, ride bikes, toss the football around, jump on the trampoline, kick around a soccerball…just anything you name it! Not only will it get them moving, but it also stimulates them much more mentally and physically than sedative activities.
Just the other day it was sunny, but cool and I thought that my girls had spend enough time inside playing every device we had in the house. Frankly, I was annoyed and knew they needed to get out and use their imaginations, and get some sunny vitamin D. They spent at least an hour outside playing a made up game.
Fortunately both my girls are involved in extra activities after school. Both of them attend Kids CrossFit at CrossFit Clayton on Monday evenings. They love taking after me and are always excited to tell me what their WOD (workout of the day) was. Usually, for the kiddos it consists of teams running with a medicine ball, air squats, burpees, sit-ups, rowing and practicing other movements. They enjoy it because it is always something different and it keeps them engaged for the entire hour they are in class! My youngest was so excited about an assignment in school when her teacher had them write out a sentence about their favorire part of the school day and why. This is what she wrote, “My favorite part of the school day is PE because I do CrossFit.” It made my whole day since her teacher took a photo of it and messaged it to me. It just goes to show you, that YOU are an example to your children.
My oldest has always been interested in swimming. So, without much swimming experience we signed her up for the summer swim team at Healthquest. She went from barely being able to swim just 50m freestyle to being able to do the medley consisting of butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle. It was amazing seeing her grow in just a couple of months of swimming during the summer. She enjoyed it so much that she decided to continue swimming during the rest of the year.
So there you have it! Encourage your kids to get out and move! Get out there and move with them! Find something they love to do and encourage them! It might not be the first sport or activity you try (we tried cheerleading and it just wasn’t her thing so we moved on to something else!) A lot of places will have trials to see if it is something your child is interested in. Kids NEED to be stimulated with physical activitiy. Childhood obesity is on the rise. And I am certain NO ONE wants that for their child. So, decide together that you’re going to get active and stick with it! BE that example to your child!
Take Care of Yourself!