With childhood obesity at epidemic levels, physical activity is a crucial part of the development of any young child. Encouraging active play at home is just one way parents can combat childhood obesity and lay the foundation for a healthy lifestyle for their children.
Encouraging Physical Activity in Preschoolers, by Steve Sanders, EdD, is a wonderful resource full of fun ways to encourage physical activity in your preschooler. Physical activity can range from playing a sport to playing a simple game. As long as your child is moving, they’re improving their physical wellbeing and developing important motor skills.
Here are some ideas for making exercise fun for your kids.
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Ideas for Encouraging Physical Activity at Home
You may wonder what else you can do to help your child be active. Consider these ideas:
- Be an active role model and have a positive attitude. If children watch you enjoying physical activity, it can foster their participation.
- Urge children to play actively on the playground or in the background, go for a fast walk, dance to music, or ride a bike. Also encourage them to participate in more vigorous activities such as running, swimming, or playing games that involve kicking, throwing, catching, and striking.
- Make time to be active as a family - walk to a local park, ride bikes, or walk the dog together.
- Buy gifts that encourage physical activity, such as balls, bats, and skipping ropes. Have fun helping children develop and practice their skills.
- Park further away from your destination (whether it is the school, a sports practice or sporting event, or a retail shop), and walk the rest of the way.