We all need to move more, and this is just as true about our younger generation. Unfortunately, screens, exhaustion, and our too busy routine take over and keep us from exercising. Integrity Urgent Care wants to challenge you and your kids to get moving more and has tips for how to make it more exciting for you all.
1.Try Different Things – Not every kid is cut out for every type of exercise. The point is to get kids moving and active and to find something they will want to continue for a season or years to come. Exposing them to different types of exercise will help them see how their body moves in different ways and will increase the likelihood of them staying consistent with exercise. Even serious athletes work in exercises from other sports to keep their bodies challenged and to move their muscles and joints in new ways.
2. Participate with Them – We want to model enthusiasm about exercise for our kids. By getting active and participating with them, you are showing your commitment to being healthy and getting to spend quality time with them as well. You can even reach your fitness goals faster and try out a new activity along the way.
3. Snacks and Beverages – Being active and healthy is about more than just moving. You can use your active time with your children as a way to teach about nutrition and taking care of their bodies in other ways. Pack plenty of fresh, cool water to stay hydrated during activity and minimize sports drinks or fruit juices as much as possible. If you do choose to have these sugary drinks, limit their sizes to appropriate portions. Have your kids help you plan a healthy snack, focusing on complex carbs, fresh fruit, and lean protein. Apples, oranges, small portions of nuts, cheese sticks, and multigrain crackers are great for outdoor activities too.
4. Set Goals – Help your kid set goals depending on the activity they are trying. Exercise is something that takes work and consistency to see progress, and kids could get easily discouraged if they aren’t great the first time they try something. For running, this may be them working towards a mile, but building up increments until they reach that distance. For basketball, it may be making 90% of their free throws. For swimmers, it may be a certain time for a distance they have chosen. Whatever they choose, setting realistic and obtainable goals and having support to work towards those goals is an important lesson that can carry over to all areas of their lives.
5. Join Others – This could look different depending on the activity or the desires of your own child. Some kids love competition and thrive in team sports where they can challenge themselves to work harder and accomplish more. Other children, regardless of talent, may prefer a more low-key approach even to traditional team sports like soccer or basketball. Let your child take the lead. While team sports offer a lot of benefits, the real goal is to keep your kid active and enjoying whatever they choose. Ask if they want to invite friends over to play or find a casual league to try out for a season before committing to a club sport.
6. Technology in Your Favor – Minimizing screen time is a huge topic of conversation for most parents. However, you can use technology in your favor to get your kids excited about exercise. Play music as you go for a walk, run, or bike ride together. Check out workout videos geared towards kids on YouTube or other streaming services. These are great to get your kids moving on rainy or bad weather days. Consider an activity tracker for steps to add up.
To learn more about your overall health, come see our team at Integrity Urgent Care. We have a number of locations ready to serve every member of your family from routine sports physicals to help with illness. Our team is going to continue staying active, and we hope you and your kids do too.