We all know that physical activity is good for our mental and physical health, and it is just as important for kids. However, many kids spend a lot of time sitting – at school, studying and increasingly on screens.
So how much exercise do school aged kids need and how do you get them moving more?
Kids need at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day. This is activity that makes your heart beat faster and makes you huff and puff, like basketball, soccer, netball, lap swimming, skipping or running.
At least three times each week this activity should be exercise that makes their bones and muscles stronger. This is doing things like skipping, running, yoga, jumping, push-ups, sit-ups, lifting weights, lunges, squats, gymnastics, climbing trees or swinging on monkey bars.
The 60 minutes doesn’t have to be done at one time – it can be spread over the day. The more exercise they do, the better.
The important thing is to make exercise fun and a routine part of their day.
Here are our top 4 tips for making exercise fun for the kids!
If you can, avoid using the car to get to school. Start the day by walking, riding or scootering to school, or to the bus or train station.
Encourage kids to be active at school during breaks. Playing hand ball or soccer, using skipping ropes or dancing are all fun options.
After school, kids should factor in some activity before starting homework. Walk the dog, throw a frisbee at the park, do an organised sport, play games with friends, kick or throw a ball around the back yard.
The weekend provides lots of opportunities to get active. Try out a new park that has a bike path or play equipment. Try walking or running or cricket at the beach. Head out on a bush walk or just explore your neighbourhood.
For more ideas, get your free Spring Clean Your Health kit today.