Think back to when you were a kid and what you used to do in your free time. Play time must have looked very different to what it does now. Kids today know how to use iPhones, iPads, and other devices from a scarily young age. But while technology’s great and has many educational benefits, it’s also limiting children’s ability to be physically curious, to imagine and explore.
You can ignite this curiosity by making play and outdoor activities part of your family’s routine. First, kids don’t want to ‘exercise’. Rather, they want to have fun and to play with their friends. Add a little bit of friendly competition into the mix and you’ll have your kids begging to go outside and play.
Making exercise fun
This idea can apply to anyone, not just kids. Actually, exercise should be fun. Here are five ways make exercising a routine family activity that’s motivating and healthy.
Walk the dog
Kids love animals. Use your family dog as a motivator. Find a great walking trail near your home and take your pooch out for a family stroll. Try to do this three times per week and make those weekend walks extra-long.
Track everyone’s progress
Again, kids are too young to know the value of exercising. But if you can turn it into a little game, it’ll keep them inspired. Bring out the whiteboard and gold stickers. Create a chart of games won, best times, kilometres cycled, and so on.
Be in nature
If there’s one thing that you can teach your kids, it’s the importance of being in nature. It resets our minds and bodies – helping us focus, reducing our stress, and speeding up healing. People who are exposed to natural scenes aren’t just happier – the very building blocks of their physiological well-being also responds positively. Teach this to your kids from an early age by playing games out in nature.
Let them pick
Ask them what they enjoy doing. Put your child in charge of the family exercise schedule for a week. Agree to do whatever they choose. You might be pleasantly surprised at the creative ideas they come up with. Then, rotate the exercise ‘roster’ every week.
Buy outdoor play equipment
Encourage your kids to play outside by investing in the right toys. This will help get them moving on their own. At Baby Vegas, we sell a range of outdoor play toys such as gardening tool sets, wheelbarrows, and pop-up tents.
Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box when it comes to exercising. Go cycling, swim in the ocean, explore the local pond, play Twister outside on the lawn… the sky’s the limit.