The development of a lifetime love of exercise and movement for children is the aim of many caregivers and parents.
In reality, less than 24 percent of American children aged 6 to 17 participate in 60 minutes of exercise every day, which is the recommended amount for children (1 Trusted Source).
The best age when Inspire a Love of Movement? When kids develop a love for movement from a young age, it will stay with them throughout their lives.
To ensure that your child gets enough exercise when they grow older, you must establish a foundation to ensure a lifetime appreciation of the sport in their first years.
Learn more about how a passion for moving begins at home, discover ideas to encourage youngsters to move and have fun and discover why active kids grow up to become active adults.
Table of Contents
The Desire for Movement Begins At the House
The foundation you build when you have children is vital for the overall well-being of your child.
Denise Woodall-Ruff, MD, Pediatrician director of the Healthy Weight & Wellness Center at Stony Brook Children’s Hospital, states that children emulate the behavior of their parents and other significant role model in their lives about a myriad of behaviors that are part of a healthy lifestyle, such as exercise and fitness.
“A child that observes a parent or role model engage in a healthy level of physical activity is more likely to accept these behaviors for themselves,” she states. “Similarly, a child that observes their caregiver sit on the couch for prolonged periods and engage in sedentary behaviors is more likely to accept these behaviors as their norm,” says Woodall-Ruff.
Natasha Trentacosta, MD, Pediatric and Adult Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Specialist Surgeon at the Cedars-Sinai Kerlan Jobe Institute in Los Angeles, agrees. “Parents, caregivers, and educators are role models for young children, as kids look up to these people to set an example of navigating life,” she says.
“Children who regularly see their parents partaking in sports and fitness activities are more likely to do it themselves — this is especially true now as screen time is increasing among young children and physical activity is decreasing,” Trentacosta says. Establishing healthy habits early in life will be in their lives as they grow.
Instilling a love for movement from an early stage begins with the home. Engaging in discussions and modeling healthy behavior, engaging in physical activities with your children, and encouraging physical activity every day will help to foster the love of movement in children from an early age.
How do you instill the love of movement?
The best way to encourage an interest in moving from the beginning is to the eye to have fun. Like adults, children tend to be less overly excited about something they do not like.
They’ll be inclined to keep it going if they’re having fun. This allows them to improve their skills and practice their capabilities.
“Every child is unique, and some gravitate toward exercise and physical activity more than others,” says John Gallucci Jr., DPT ATC as CEO at JAG-ONE Physical Therapy.
Discovering activities your child likes and making them into activities that motivate the child to move more is crucial. “Children, especially young kids, should not feel as if exercise is a chore,” Gallucci says. Gallucci.
As children grow older and become more involved in organized sports, remember that some kids love competitive sports that are structured while others don’t.
Maintain a broad definition of moving that encompasses walks with your family or dancing in your living space, climbing trees, yoga, and any other activity they enjoy.
Inspiring kids to participate in physical activity early on will increase the chances that they’ll be reaping all benefits earlier, and their enthusiasm for exercising will likely grow as they age.
Movement and exercise shouldn’t be an obligation. Parents and caregivers must focus on having fun while encouraging children to participate in activities they love.
Tips for Inspire a Love of Movement
Giving your child opportunities to move throughout the day is essential in your child’s development of physical and emotional development.
It can also help set the foundation for involvement in fitness activities when an adult.
Here are ten suggestions to help you create an interest in movement from when you are a child.
Be sure that the activity is suitable for children of the appropriate age.
Inviting a child of 3 to play a game with the family of badminton may not be the most effective way to stimulate activity.
However, having the net lower and providing them with a preschool-sized racket that has a large ball can increase the chances of success and boost the enjoyment factor.
Make sure you are focusing on motor abilities.
The development of gross motor skills is essential for preschoolers, particularly children. These skills aid children with coordination, balance, strength, and reaction speed (2 Trusted Source).
For toddlers and children in preschool, make sure that your activities are focused on throwing or kicking balls, hopping climbs, obstacle courses, and riding a trike or bike equipped with training wheels.
Wear helmets and other protective gear while cycling, and supervise them while climbing or playing with equipment or toys.
Create active toys
When selecting outdoor and indoor toys, including those that require active play, like balls for younger children and scooters and bikes for older children.
Toys that climb are an excellent option for preschoolers, toddlers, and school-age kids, be sure they’re suitable for your child’s age.
Ensure you have the most actively oriented toys than passive ones at home. When your child requests a new item, make them give up a passive toy in exchange for an active toy.
This shifts the balance towards movement and helps them understand that less can be more.
Encourage play for free.
Children can play for free and learn about themselves and their surroundings. It’s also an excellent opportunity to exercise.
Be sure to provide plenty of play opportunities for your child during your day. To keep the kids engaged, Encourage your child to be outside for 30 minutes.
They can play with their imaginations to design a challenge course or scavenger hunt, ride a bike or scooter and play around with a ball or other outdoor games.
Be active with your kids.
Children of all ages of any age to “get some exercise” does not always result in results. If you’re involved with your kids, they’re more likely to desire to be involved.
Furthermore, this could help working parents looking to get active but cannot be absent from their children during the day.
Create an activity calendar.
Woodall-Ruff suggests a weekly fitness schedule that has goals. You must create it together and then post the schedule in a shared place. Choose with your child on a non-food reward if they achieve their objective.
Talk about fitness
If you’d like to get your children to be active, You must educate them about what it means.
Explore opportunities to establish an atmosphere of fitness in your home. Be open about your workouts or sports activities and their importance to daily life. Please discuss your food and how it fuels your movement in the dining room.
Make chores work for you.
Combining chores with competitive games will ensure that your child can complete a vital household chore and gain fitness when they do it.
If you have multiple children, you can turn chores into a contest that involves exercising.
For instance, toddlers or youngsters in the preschool age group can compete to see who throws their laundry in the basket fastest.
Outside, create a game by cleaning your yard and weeding the garden. Define a portion of the garden that each child (and parents) to tidy up. The child who cleans up first takes home the prize.
Let them pick the activities.
Even children know what they love and will certainly appreciate it when you inquire about it. Allow your child to choose sports or activities they love and participate together as a family.
Find a movement-inspired tale to read.
Librarys and bookstores have a wealth of books to inspire children to move.
Find a few for your kid and let him pick one or three books to take home. These are some of the titles to help get you to get started:
You can sign up for a preschool that is based on activities.
If you need childcare or plan to send your child to preschool, search for places that promote fitness and movement as a critical element of their day.
Try an organized game.
If your child is old enough, you may want to think about enrolling them in some organized sports. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, most kids are ready to play essential, organized sports by age 6. ( 3).
Group sports such as soccer and tee ball have age brackets that match the game to the child’s level and age, which allows them to develop new skills and learn about the game.
Physical guidelines for children’s activities: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that children exercise for at least 60 minutes daily (4 Trusted Source).
In particular, more specifically, the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans provide a set of guidelines for exercise that parents and caregivers are required to follow based on the age group (5 Trusted Source).
Young children between 3 and 5 must engage in plenty of physical exercises all day. Physical activity in this age group aims to boost development and growth. Preschoolers should be exposed to various types of play and active playing. It is important to have variety when children are just starting.
Students of all ages
Children, teenagers, adolescents, and children between the ages of 6 and 17 must engage in moderate to vigorous-intensity exercise for a minimum of 60 minutes daily. It does not need to be done at once. Encourage your children to break their 60-minute lesson into smaller chunks.
For instance, 20 minutes of playing soccer or cycling for 20 minutes, riding along with 20 minutes of physical exercise at school. Remember that any moderate or vigorous exercise or movement contributes to the guidelines for physical activity.
Ideally, students in school should participate in aerobic, muscle-building, and bone-strengthening activities. However, most 60 minutes of each day should be cardio or aerobic. They could also include muscle- and bone-strengthening exercises such as resistance training thrice a week.
Activities that are aerobic for children in preschool include tag, following the leader, playing in a playground, riding bikes and walking, skipping, swimming, dancing, throwing and catching, and throwing and tumbling.
Likewise, aerobic exercises for children and teens of school age include cycling, running, martial arts, sports dance, catching and throwing games such as hiking, swimming, tag, and flat soccer.
Children and adolescents in school must get at least 60 minutes of physical daily. Children of preschool age can concentrate on their movement throughout the day, playing energetic games and outdoor fitness and physical activities for the family.
Links between child movements and physical fitness for adults
Children who develop healthy physical exercise habits have a better chance of keeping those habits into adulthood.
Research has shown that physical exercise enhances your heart health, increases the strength of muscles and bones, and helps maintain the weight you need to be healthy (6 Trusted Source).
Woodall-Ruff explains that these health benefits for young children could translate into better results in later life.
A large study of observation involving more than 48,000 postmenopausal women found that higher self-recall levels and levels of physical activity during childhood were related to higher levels of activity at the end of adulthood.
Notably, women who exercised when they were children engaged in greater levels of physical exercise as adults, and most of them averaged 2.8 metabolism equivalent (MET) hours per week greater than women who were inactive throughout their childhood (7 Trusted Source).
Another study showed that sports participation at age 10 was linked with increased physical activity by the age of 42. However, the study also examined outdoor activities at 10 years old as an indicator of activity levels in adulthood. It concluded that, in contrast to activities, outdoor playing at the age of 10 did not correlate with the level of physical activity that was observed until the age of 42.
Physically active children are more likely to develop into active adults and generally have healthier lifestyles as they age.
“When exercise and physical activity are introduced at a young age, research has suggested that confidence in the person’s abilities and an interest in a healthier, more fit lifestyle are established early on and then carried through for the remainder of their life,” is the opinion of Gallucci.
Children who exercise from an early age keep up to be healthy at the age of adulthood, making them more likely to engage regularly in fitness.
Conclusion: Inspire a Love of Movement
One of the best ways to improve your kids’ health is to encourage them to move as early as possible. Early age.
This will not only allow them to achieve their academic goals and remain healthy throughout their academic years but will also encourage an interest in movement throughout their lives.
Read More: Fitness and Exercise for Kids