Children nowadays have become less and less physically active. Many children rather sit in front of a television or computer screen than go outside and ride a bike. Due to all this inactivity, childhood obesity is on the rise. No parent wants to see their child unhealthy and overweight, but some parents just don't know how to get their little ones to get more exercise. When adults think of exercise, they think of regimented workouts such as running and lifting weights. For kids, though, exercise could be running outside playing tag or playing catch, or even helping you with the yard work. There are plenty of ways that a parent can get their child to be more physically active on a regular basis.
Turn Off the Television and Computer
It's okay that your child watches an hour or so of television or plays a computer game for half an hour, but there comes a time were you just have to turn off the television and computer. By making these things off limits for your child during certain times, they will have to find another activity to do. Most kids will not want to just sit there and look at a blank screen, so they will most likely will find something to entertain themselves. This is were the next step comes in.
Encourage Them To Play and Have Fun
Sometimes kids need some encouragement from parents to get up out of the house and do something. Hand them a ball and ask them to play catch or even Frisbee in the backyard. Take them to the park and let them run and have fun. Do physically activities with your child to encourage them to do the same. This could mean that you start a simple game of tag in the backyard or ask them to help you in the garden. This also may mean buying them a fun exercise video, such as Tony and the Kids by Tony Horton, to do on rainy days.
Find Something That They Enjoy
If you want your child to stick with being physically active on a regular basis, then you need to find something that they like to do. Just like anybody else, if your child does not like do something, they are not going to do it. Try a couple of different things to see what physical activities they like best. Some exercises that you may want to try are: bike riding, dancing, sports such as basketball, baseball, football, volleyball, and soccer, running, Frisbee, gardening, fun workout videos like Tony and the Kids, skateboarding, hiking, and swimming.
Parents should lead by example when it comes to exercise and leading a physically active life. If your child sees you watching television all day long, you think that they are going to want to be active? Instead, turn off the television, get going and encourage them to have fun at something they love.
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