Most kids nowadays are somewhat of a couch potato. Several of them are not into sports and prefer lounging around the house most likely glued to the TV or other hand-held portable devices such as mobile phones or tabs.
Parents are getting progressively worried over this unhealthy trend and are desperate to find ways to turn things around. But in order to rectify problems, we need to first look at the root causes.
Why Is Your Kid Not Being Physically Active?
With age, it becomes increasingly difficult for children to be physically active due to their body clock and routine clock being constantly at loggerheads with each other. Common reasons for this include:
- Not having relevant role models,
- Family members not making enough time to be more actively involved.
- Increasing pressure at school.
- A general feeling of not being good at sports.
Fortunately, it is not too difficult to turn the tables in this case scenario. The trick is to find ideas and ways which will motivate your kid to get off the couch right onto the playground. It’s important to induce your child with the benefits of physical activity.
The Crucial Benefits of Building A Physically Active Kid:
- Their stamina and inner strength increases.
- They get better sleep.
- They have a decreased risk of getting type 2 Diabetes.
- They have a better Body Mass Index (BMI)
- They build a better physique with stronger bones and muscles.
- There is a positive shift to their outlook towards life.
What To Keep In Mind While Motivating Your Kid To Be More Active?
Whatever you do, make sure you choose the right activity. Plan according to your child’s age and interest. Or else, the monotony might annoy them. Pay attention to what activities your child enjoys most and incorporate that into his daily routine. Here are some other ways you can motivate your child:
Bring A Friend Along:
Older kids love the company of their friends and are more apt to doing fitness activities with their parents if their friends are by their side.
Who doesn’t like taking a buddy along for a bike ride or going ice-skating?
Give Them a Goal/Target:
Kids are motivated by goals and competition. They get encouraged when their progress is tracked and rewarded.
Here Are A Few Ideas to Make Exercise A Family Activity That’s Fun, Exciting And Healthy
Don’t set goals and with activities that require a lot of work at the beginning. Start small and set the targets low at first and then work your way up gradually after achieving those results. Here are some ways you can do it:
Give Him the Choice
Let your kid decide what activity he wants to do. Creative kids may come up with innovative fun ideas that the whole family can participate in getting that much-needed workout.
Nature lovers may prefer walks in the park or cycle ride beside the lake. Adventure lovers will go for more demanding activities such as hitting the gym or climbing a wall.
Work out a schedule
Fix a time and date for the family activity and make sure everyone in the family commits to it.
If the weather doesn’t cooperate for an outdoor activity, choose something indoors to have a workout with.
Mix it up
Don’t stereotype your fitness regime. Choose spontaneous activities that are a mix of indoor and outdoor. Hit the gym one day, garden the next, and use a fun toy such as a hoverboard to make him appreciate the magic of open-air activities while throwing in some light exercises simultaneously.
Keep it short
If kids don’t want to commit to exercise, tell them to only do it for 5 minutes. It’s at least standard to work out a small sweat.
Doing a 5-minute bike ride or jogging is relatively average for anyone and with time it can be stretched for much longer.
Think Outside the Box
Exercise does not need to be confined to the age-old classics. Think of new and fun ideas to get those calories burned. Younger kids may dance their heart out to some loud music.
Just because its winter doesn’t mean you can’t go swimming. Find a nearby hotel with an indoor pool and see how much it costs. Go snowboarding at a mall where they have artificial snow.
Bring A New Twist To Old Games:
Parents vs. kids games are always exhilarating. You can find new ways to play age-old games like Twister, jump rope and so on.
Give Him Positive Encouragement
Always remember to praise your kid once he achieves a goal. Kids feel elevated when they receive acknowledgment for reaching even the smallest goals, such as riding a bike a little farther or walking an extra few minutes.
Support your child
Children who aren’t naturally active suffer from body-image issues. They might be wary of physical activity in public in fear of embarrassment or teasing resulting from the failures or how they look.
Let your child know that it’s okay to fail but what’s important is to pick yourself up and finish what you started. Nagging them down will only frustrate them further.
Be a Positive Role Model
Practice what you preach. Show them that exercising is fun and doable on a daily basis.
Bring subtle changes to your routine such as walking instead of driving a short distance, or taking the stairs instead of using the elevator.
Set time limits for screen time
Let your child know how much screen-time he is allowed, ideally not more than 2 hours a day. That includes watching television, surfing the internet or playing games on the tab/cell phone.
Remove gadgets out of sight to curtail their ever-rising temptations. Encourage more outdoor activities as alternatives such as walking the dog or shooting hoops at the local playground.
It’s certainly not easy to get your little couch potato out on the playground and make them enjoy it. Still, try out these methods for an easier and systematic approach to getting your child on the road to physical fitness.
No matter how big a sloth your child is, it’s possible for them to be in a good shape. All they need is their parents’ positive attitude to help them curb their disinclination towards exercise. Along with your child, you too should work towards the path of physical fitness.
This article was written by Shawn who’s a writer at Feedfond. He’s an avid fitness freak, likes to work-out as often as he can and loves to generate his pro tips whenever he can. To read more his articles, visit Feedfond.com.