Keeping children active and healthy is hard enough without the added limits caused by Covid-19. With schools running less extra-curricular activities, and local health centers reducing their opening hours, providing your child with opportunities to exercise can feel like an impossible task.
But with the World Health Organisation recommending at least 60 minutes of high-intensity physical activity for children aged 5-17 to maintain healthy growth, it’s a task that cannot be ignored.
While social distancing and other Covid-19 health measures may make exercising harder, these 3 easy tips will help you keep you kids happy and healthy during this hard time.
Get Creative in the Garden
No leaving the house, no problem. All you need for this is an outdoor space and your creativity. Gardens are the perfect little exercise oases, whether small or large adapt it in the right way and your children will love it.
Obstacle courses, football fields, balloon tag arenas and skipping rope stadiums, are all fun ideas that can be used in your garden. Remember to think outside the box, if you don’t have water guns or footballs substitute them for a hose and balloons.
Alongside helping your children stay healthy and fit, outdoor time has also been suggested to build confidence and promote creativity.
Try a Virtual Class
Less in-person exercise classes for your child doesn’t necessarily mean less classes in general. Although you may not be able to visit your local health center, there are many virtual activities for kids that are just as good.
Unlike creating an exercise schedule, which can feel very forced, these classes allow your child to be creative and active in a more flexible way. As they are online, you can tailor it to your child’s likes and dislikes and ensure that they stay engaged and happy the whole time.
Additionally, there are no time constraints! While in-person classes are great, they can sometimes get in the way of other engagements, virtual activities for your kids can allow you the freedom to work while your child exercises.
On the other hand, if you are happy to do so, these are also a great way for you as a parent to get involved too and spend some quality bonding time with your child.
Stick to a Routine
While fun activities and creative ideas can help attract kids to exercise, the key to maintaining long-term motivation stems from having a good routine.
Make sure you have activities planned and know how much time you want to dedicate to exercise a day. Although you may not want to have an exact schedule, as this is always hard with kids, having a rough idea can help relieve any stress related to this issue.
Depending on their age, you may want to create an activity board and let your child decide what they want to do. This can build trust and feelings of security between you and your children.
At the end of the day, the most important thing is to get creative and try and make it fun. Get yourself involved and act as a role model by showing your children what it means to stay active.
While Covid-19 has had a massive impact on daily life, let it be what pushes you and your children towards exercise rather than away from it.