Page Description: Workouts or exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle that is not limited to any age or gender. The earlier you include exercise in your daily routine, the healthier you’ll be.
Exercise should be a part of everyone’s routine, including kids. However, telling parents to introduce their kids to work out is a touchy topic because there’s a silent stereotype that exercise is for youths and adults.
Most health challenges suffered by adults today are a result of the lifestyle they led while growing up. That’s to say, an obese adult today was probably a foodie while growing up. So, to ensure that your child grows into a healthy adult, gradually introduce them to exercise that’s befitting for their age.
Ten great exercise activities for kids
You don’t need to worry about your kids getting burned out from exercise activities above their age. Rest assured, there are fun and engaging exercises for them. Kids love to play around, and most of their playful activities can be turned into workouts by controlling them and helping them stay in the same position for a few minutes.
Here’s a list of fun exercise activities for kids:
Jumping is an important exercise for child health. It helps to build and strengthen the bones and muscles, develop balance and coordination, improve bone density, improve heart health, improve metabolism, and burn calories. Kids love to play and jump around. It wouldn’t hurt them to take advantage of their playful nature to improve their health.
Kids love to jump, but getting them to jump as a form of exercise can be a little challenging. However, you can incorporate singing and dancing into the activity to make it fun and engaging. You can also start the jumping exercise with bouncing, then gradually switch to jumping.
Running is another exercise beneficial to your child’s health. Just like jumping, it helps to build bone, muscle, and joint strength, improve cardiovascular health, improve mental health, enhance cognitive abilities and academic performance, enhance metabolism, burn calories, boost the immune system, boost confidence, relieve stress, and stabilize blood pressure.
Running is an outdoor exercise that should be controlled, especially when kids are involved. Ensure that there are no obstacles that could harm them when they fall, especially if you are not trying to introduce hurdles to the exercise.
To make running more fun for the kids, you can introduce games like freeze and chase, relay races, and competitions that reward the fastest person or group to bring back a flag or treasure.
Climbing is not just a bodybuilder. It helps to enhance cognitive reasoning, improve problem-solving skills, improve balance, improve heart health, burn calories, improve self-confidence, and build endurance.
Just like running, climbing is an outdoor activity that requires team or group interaction, which helps to hone leadership skills, effective communication, and networking. When children engage in such activities, it improves their health and social skills.
Skipping is a coordinated cardiovascular exercise that combines jumping and running. It helps to improve heart health, enhance blood circulation, burn calories, release toxins from the body, enhance strength and grip, boost mental health, burn fat, and enhance flexibility,
To make skipping fun, you can turn it into a game, play songs as they skip, then include slight stunts, and other activities that can spice up the exercise. These will help trigger the kids’ interest and make them look forward to the activity every day.
Walking might seem so casual, but it’s very beneficial to health. You can go on evening strolls with your children to help strengthen the bones and build endurance. Walking helps to improve blood circulation, improve mood, boost energy, strengthen muscles and joints, improve sleep, and prevent heart diseases.
While walking alongside your kids, you can buy them snacks to keep them distracted from the distance. Also, don’t make them walk a very long distance from the start. When introducing walking as a form of exercise for your kids, start with a short distance, then gradually add more distance as the days go by.
- Bear crawls
The bear crawl is an important exercise for weight loss. Bear crawls help burn fat, improve shoulder support, improve heart health, muscle strength, and coordination, and build endurance.
These days, we have a lot of overweight kids because parents cannot help but feed them a lot of junk and snacks. However, with exercise, especially bear crawls, you’ll be able to control the weight of your children.
To make bear crawl interesting for kids, you can tell them animal-related stories buy bear costumes, and get them to imitate the heroic character of a bear. You can also come up with other activities that can trigger such reactions from the kids.
- Crab walks
Crab walks are just like bear walks, but this time in reverse dimension. It helps to strengthen the muscles, build shoulder support, core stability, and endurance, enhance stability, and burn calories.
To make crab walks interesting for the kids, you can leverage their imagination just like in bear walks. You can tell them fun animal stories that paint crabs as heroic characters, folk tales, and any imaginative strategy that comes to mind. The goal is to win their attention and get them to exercise without getting bored.
Yoga is a meditative kind of exercise that improves concentration. It also helps to reduce inflammation, relieve stress, boost mood, improve mental health, boost energy, enhance flexibility, reduce anxiety, and improve heart health. Besides the health benefits of Yoga, it helps to improve the academic performance of the kids by increasing focus, memory, and self-confidence.
Getting kids to do yoga is very easy. Just lead by example and they’ll mimic you. When they see you seated quietly with your eyes closed and probably wearing a funny or catchy costume, it’ll trigger their interest and they’ll want to do the same thing.
Squatting is an exercise that helps to improve strength and mobility. It focuses on building the muscles of the lower body and increasing flexibility. Squatting also helps to build endurance, burn fat, improve balance, improve heart health, and strengthen the muscles and joints of the lower body.
Getting children to squat is also quite easy. You might start by wanting to know who jumps the highest, or other jumping games and dances that require them to jump. Also, don’t forget to lead by example because they’ll do what they see you do.
Swimming is a very interesting sport. It helps to improve cardiovascular health and blood circulation, build endurance, burn calories, boost energy, and strengthen the muscles and joints. Swimming is fun, and the possibility of your child loving it is high.
To make it more interesting, let your kids swim or learn how to swim in the company of their friends. You can also swim along with them to make it more fun and create beautiful memories for them.
How to introduce your kids to workout
- Lecture them on the benefit of exercising
Children are smarter than we think. Since they are in their learning or curious stage, they like to try out things, especially when it sounds fun and engaging. Teaching them the benefit of exercising in simple words that is easy for them to understand, will help arouse their interest in it and make your job easier.
Remember that not all kids are the same. So when dealing with them, exercise patience and try to come down to their level. Convincing them might not be easy at the start, but once you win their interest, you are in for a fun ride.
- Lead by example
Children like to emulate the elders around them. Taking the lead by showing them what to do is a great way to start. You can take them along with you when going to the gym. When they see what you and the others around you are doing, it’ll trigger their interest to want to join the fun.
- Make it fun and playful
Children love fun and engaging activities. Don’t just make them jump, run, climb, or do any exercise without spicing things up. It will bore them and make them lose interest in the exercise entirely, making it difficult to achieve your goal.
Incorporate singing, dancing, games, competitions, rewards, and anything that can spice up the activity. These activities will build and sustain their interest, and make your job easy.
- Involve the whole family
Seeing the people they love and are comfortable around will make the kids relax and more interested in whatever activity you bring to the table. Also, involving family members will help the kids to develop the habit of working out faster because seeing the whole family get involved will register it as a value in their subconscious mind.
- Establish a routine
Habits develop through consistent practice. Make sure to include at least 1 hour to 1 hour 30 minutes of kids’ workouts daily in your family schedule because it is essential for the growth and development of the kids. It’ll also help them develop an interest in the exercise and adapt to the routine.
If you had doubts about introducing your kids to workouts, now you’ve learned that it is not as scary as it might seem; It is engaging and fun. Introducing your kids to workouts or exercise helps to set them on a path that leads to a healthy lifestyle. Besides health benefits, exercising helps kids hone their cognitive, leadership, and social skills. It helps to prepare a child for all-around success.