Keeping kids active is one of the most important things parents can do to ensure their children live healthy and happy lives. Kids naturally love to move. Think about babies. What do they do? They roll over, then they sit, then they crawl, walk and run. At that point we can barely keep up with them. That’s why keeping them active is so important.
Here are some the benefits of keeping kids active.
Activity strengthens the heart.
The heart gets stronger and stronger with physical activity. Strong hearts are better and warding off illness, such as heart disease.
It helps fight obesity.
One of the greatest problems we are facing as a society in the US is childhood obesity. Weight management is achievable through active living and healthy eating. Keeping kids active not only helps them maintain and healthy weight, it also allows them to develop habits early on that will carry into their adult life.
It Strengthens Bones.
Bones can get stronger with exercise which increases bone density. As we age bone density becomes vitally important for long term health. A child’s early years are an important time to begin the process of building strong bones, which can later ward of disease such as osteoporosis.
Aids in academic performance.
According to a report from the Institute of Medicine “children who are more active show greater attention, have faster cognitive processing speed, and perform better on standardized academic tests than children who are less active.”
Helps with emotional wellbeing.
Exercise has long been known to reduce anxiety, depression and elevate mood. It is one of the easiest ways to tackle these issues. Many people who are lifelong exercise enthusiasts claim that they exercise not just for the physical benefits, but because its helps them maintain a positive attitude and self-image.
So now that we know there are numerous benefits to keeping kids active. How can we do it? There are a lot of ways we can make exercise fun for kids as a family. One the easiest things we can do is to make fitness a game. Kids love to play games, especially when parents and other adult loved ones get involved. One great activity that can easily be done in your home is using a deck of playing cards to get kids moving. Give this a try.
Keep Kids Active: Card Game Family Fun!
What you will need:
- Select four exercises. Ideas include:
Cardio: Jumping jacks, high knees, mountain climbers, burpees
Upper body: Push-ups (modified with knees on ground if desired), tricep dips, and shoulder press
Lower body: Squats, bridge, lunges
Core: Sit-ups, planks
- Assign each suit an exercise. Feel free to post it on a chalk or white board or piece of paper.
- One person is in charge of picking a card and calling out the number of on it. Face cards and aces are all valued at 11. Jokers are valued 15.
- When the card is called out participants will complete the correct number of corresponding exercises with the suit.
- Do as many cards in the deck as possible. A good time frame for younger children is 5-10 minutes. After the time frame if kids still have energy switch up the exercises and repeat.
Remember, kids love to play. Allow them to get involved. They can even help pick gthe exercises they want to complete. Try mixing them up or doing a game that targets on area such as cardio or lower body. This is great for adults too who want to incorporate movement in their day!
Looking for more ideas to get your kids active, check out 5 Ways To Make Fitness Fun.