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Teach Your Child How to Exercise

In today’s society, with the advancement of technology such as cable TV, computers, game consoles (both regular and handheld) cell phones, and a multitude of other technological devices why would a child ever want to step outdoors. This only leads to children sitting more often than exercising, which will in turn lead to an unhealthy lifestyle and childhood or adolescent obesity.
 
Teaching exercise to your children can start as early as you would like them to start, which is more personal preference than children needs. Even as early as infants you can exercise your babies with infant messages. One thing to think about is the earlier you begin an exercise program with your child the easier the transition will be for them. If children grow up with an exercise program, they are more prone to continue that experience and regiment.
 
Preschool
Being a good role model and showing your children how important exercise is to you will normally give them the motivation to be a part of your routine. Make sure to put 10-15 minutes of exercise into your schedule at least two to three times a week. Whether this is mainly for you or a program you are doing with your child. Say Monday, Wednesday and Friday you and your child walk around the block, or just do some sit-ups and jumping jacks in the living room.

Take little opportunities to make more healthy choices when you and your child are together; take the stairs as opposed to the elevator. Or if you are going down the block walk instead of driving. Little things like this will encourage your children to find ways to incorporate good health.

Main points to address:

  • Schedule time with your child to exercise together.
  • Take opportunities to exercise when you’re out together.

Grades K-3rd
Sports or other recreational activities produce great results for children, while they are doing something they enjoy doing they are receiving much needed exercise without even knowing it, what is better than that? To ensure your children have a great time while getting their daily exercise allow them to pick the sport or activity they would like to participate in.

Children learn new activities and games in school through their gym instructors. Talk to your children about the new activities they learned in school and allow them to show you and teach you what they have learned. When children believe their parents are excited to “learn Efrom them they are more perceptive to being involved in the next activity in school.
 

Main points to address:

  • Get them active in sports or other recreational activities.
  • Allow them to teach you new tricks.

Grades 4th-6th
Physical activities in children begin to reduce once children get into their teen years. Therefore, making an active lifestyle important earlier will continue through their teens years. Providing the importance of exercise early on and emphasizing the importance of it in our weekly schedules will be more of a normal routine to children rather than something forced. Get outside with your children, play hide-n-seek, throw a few balls around to each other, catch lightening bugs, play tennis, football, or any other sport that you and your family enjoy together.

You don’t have to just play outside you can also watch these sporting events on TV. Watching others who excel at playing the sports your family enjoys will ultimately get your child motivated to play as well. Invite his friends over to get a game together. If you and your family enjoy football, for instance, then have a football gathering with your friends and/or your child’s friends. After you watch the game televised get out there and put a game together with all those who came over to watch the game. Most important show your children that exercise is not only good for them it can be a lot of fun too.

Main points to address:

  • Get outside together.
  • Watch sports together.

Resources
Resources that can help you in your venture include:

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