Encouraging your children to stay fit and active can be a challenge. Many kids just want to sleep and with so much television and radio, it can be hard for them to get motivated. Of course, there are some kids that automatically want to join into sports and tend to get plenty of daily exercise, but this just isn’t the case for everybody.
The first step to getting your child active is to find something that they are interested. Some sports can be an excellent activity. I was a shy kid with heart problems which hadn’t yet been discovered. Everyone, including myself, thought I was lazy and had no ambition. As it turned out, I was just sick. Still, every Saturday morning throughout the winter I bowled on a league for six years.
Bowling, softball, kickball, basketball, these are all things that a child might be interested in. Pay attention to what his or her friends are doing. That’s usually the key to getting them active. I played outside riding my bike and walking to the local parks for hours. I was shy, chubby and had a low self image, but if my friends wanted to go to the water park or to the local athletic club, you can bet I found a way to get there too.
It was also my friends that got me into bowling. My mother did Yoga and even though Yoga alone isn’t going to make someone lose weight, it is an excellent strength trainer and has many benefits, including calming and relaxation. Even as a kid I was interested in doing Yoga because some of my earliest memories of my mom were of her in a black leotard and black tights with some big bulky headphones on doing Yoga in our living room.
You can also get your kids active by showing them that you’re active too! Kids learn by example and if their parents sit around all the time, they’re more likely to do the same. Participating in fun physical activities with your kids can really get them moving. After all, they want to spend time with their families and sometimes our families are the only people we feel comfortable enough to exercise around.
Encourage your kids without pressuring them too much. Kids don’t react well to pressure and it’s the pressure that tends to make them too uncomfortable to stay active in the first place. Remember to be encouraging and to be there for them, helping them in any way you can to stay healthy and active.