As a parent, getting your kids to exercise can be tough. They always seem to be too busy with school and extracurricular activities. And when they’re not in school or participating in activities, they’re glued to their phones or tablets. It’s hard to compete with all of that! But as a parent, it’s important to make sure your kids are getting enough exercise. Here are some tips from me, a fitness expert and parent, on how to get your kids moving!
Get them Ride-on toys: Ride-on toys come with many benefits. From making your kid more creative to getting them outside the house, it’s hard to discard the benefits of a ride-on toy. Ride-on toys have been proven to improve motor skills in children. These also help in the overall development of your child and can also help your child stay active and fit.
Be their role model: One of the best ways to get your kids to exercise is by being a good role model. If you’re always sedentary, chances are your kids will be too. But if you make a point to be active and live a healthy lifestyle, your kids will likely follow suit. Show them that exercising can be fun! Play tag together, go for walks or runs, play catch – there are endless possibilities. Just get out there and move around with them!
Encourage them: It’s important to encourage your kids when they’re being active. Whether it’s praise or rewards, let them know that you noticed their efforts and appreciate them. This will help motivate them to keep up the good work!
Use exercise as transportation: This is one of the more fun ways to get your kids to exercise. If you are taking your kids somewhere, unless it’s far away, get them to walk. Walk them to school or cycle them if the distance is too long to be covered. If cycling or walking them to school seems too unrealistic, walk them back. You can stop by a park mid-way and have your fun. The goal is not to separate time for exercising but rather to incorporate exercise into their day. The likelihood of your kids following the routine of exercising daily is very low, so make use of opportunities to get them moving throughout the day.
Have fun: While it can be easy to get angry with your kids for not exercising or staying on their tablets all day long, the goal here is to have fun. Research shows that kids are more likely to follow something if they’re having fun. So make sure to keep the environment light and fun when trying to get your kids to exercise!
Make the activity social: The moment you involve friends in the mix, the activity gets more fun. Exercising with friends can make exercise more enjoyable for kids, making them more likely to stick with it. It also removes the pressure from you as the parent to be the only one encouraging them.
Set some ground rules: Just like any other activity, there need to be some guidelines set in place when getting your kids to exercise. This will ensure everyone is on the same page and knows what is expected of them. For example, you may want to set a rule that they must at least walk for 30 minutes every day or that they can only watch TV for an hour if they’ve exercised for an hour first.
Find an activity they love: One of the best ways to get your kids to exercise is to find an activity they love. If they enjoy it, they’re more likely to stick with it. There are tons of activities out there – from team sports to individual ones – so there’s bound to be something your kids will love. Once you find that activity, encourage them to stick with it!
Use competition as a motivator: If you have two kids or more, you can use competition as a motivating factor. See who can get to most steps at the end of the day or see who wins in a race. As long as you use competition as a motivating factor, your kids will respond in kind. However, ensure that the competition doesn’t invoke an unhealthy rivalry among your kids.
Give gifts that promote physical activity: If you are serious about getting your kids to exercise, you may want to consider giving gifts that promote physical activity. This could be anything from a new pair of running shoes to a trampoline. Whatever it is, make sure it gets them moving!
Include kids in household activities: If you’re doing some chores around the house, include your kids in on the action. They can help with laundry, vacuuming, or even walking the dog. This way, they’re getting some exercise while also helping out around the house.
Get the whole family involved: The best way to get your kids to exercise is to get the entire family involved. This way, everyone is on board and committed to being active. Plus, it’s a great way to bond as a family!
While it can be tough to peel your kids away from their tablets, getting them to exercise is not an impossible task. With a little creativity and perseverance, you can get your kids to exercise in no time! Use these tips to get started. And before you know it, your kids will be active, healthy, and getting the best of you.