Fitness for kids may not be as important as it is for adults, but that doesn’t mean kids should just be allowed to spend all of their free time inside the house.
Before the year 2000, kids spent much of their time in the great outdoors. Few had personal computers and video game consoles, and NO ONE had tablets or smartphones to occupy every hour of their day. They had to play with friends–inside and outside–if they want to enjoy the time they weren’t spending on homework and school.
Now, it’s hard to find a child who doesn’t have some sort of entertainment device. Nearly every household in the country has at least a computer, a gaming system, a tablet, and a number of smartphones. Children spend most of their time sitting, playing games, watching TV, surfing the internet, and so on. The amount of exercise they get every day has decreased DRASTICALLY in the last decade.
This is why it’s so important for you to ensure that your kids get plenty of exercises every day! Not only will you help them to avoid gaining weight, but you’ll keep them healthy and help them start forming habits that they will continue through life! It’s never been easier (or more fun)….just pop in workout or yoga videos for kids and have at it 🙂
Adult vs. Kids Fitness
Adults need to place a lot more emphasis on their fitness and health simply because they have it much harder than kids do. For an adult over the age of 40 to lose a single pound of body fat, it takes A LOT of exercise, dieting, and healthy living. They have to spend more time at the gym, do a wider range of exercise, and be stricter with what they eat.
For children, however, it’s not as vital to get focused, consistent exercise. While exercise does help children to stay healthy, staying “in shape” is not as important for kids. They are going to grow, and many children with excess body weight end up developing into healthy teenagers and adults. The body burns off a lot of the fat during adolescence, and excess body mass is often turned into muscle mass once the children start training for sports and other fitness-related activities.
For that reason, DON’T worry too much if your child isn’t lifting weights, running, or training for sports every day. Your child does need to be more active, so you should encourage them to participate in team sports, but the only thing your child needs to do more is to move around. The more your child moves, the more muscles they will build, the stronger their bones will become, and the lesser chance there will be of building excess body fat.
Why Your Kids Need More Exercise Outside of Recess
Recess is time for the kids to do exercise at school, but how many kids actually spend their recess running around? You’ll find that most kids would rather sit and talk with friends or play on their smartphones than do exercise.
This can actually be a problem because the way life is today, your kids need MORE exercise than they did 20 or 50 years ago. Why is this?
- They spend more time sitting — Kids rarely walk to school, but are driven by their parents or the school bus. When they get home, they spend all of their time sitting–studying, homework, TV, games, etc. The increase in sitting (a low-power activity) has led to slower metabolic rates, reduced muscle growth, and increased fat storage.
- Recess is rarely focused and quality – Recess is all about taking a break from school, and far fewer kids these days enjoy running and playing with their friends. This means that the time they have allotted for exercise is rarely quality exercise time.
- There is more unhealthy food – Children of 50 years ago ate food that was almost entirely natural, but food today is so highly processed and full of chemicals that it is nearly devoid of nutrients. Kids often eat high-calorie, low nutrient foods, meaning that they are packing on a lot of fat. Toxins and chemicals also slow down body functions, so it requires an even greater effort just for their bodies to run normally.
Exercise is the key to combat all of these problems. The more time your kids spend doing exercise when at home, the less time they will spend sitting on their butts (watching TV, playing games, etc.). You can ensure that the kids get proper exercise under your supervision. By doing more exercise, you can combat the unhealthiness that stems from the poor diets so common in this day and age!
Ways to Make Fitness Fun for Kids
Sadly, the truth is that more kids would rather spend time playing video games than playing basketball or baseball. It takes a lot of encouragement and motivation to get your kids out to do exercise.
But what if you found a way to make it fun? Here are some ways you can make exercise fun for your kids:
Exercise Videos For Kids
There are lots of exercise videos for kids, but why not have your kids do the exercise video alongside you? Workouts for kids can often be too easy, so it’s time to have them take on an adult-sized challenge with you. Work out together and celebrate your success together!
Yoga Videos For Kids
Yoga is one of the best workouts for kids! Not only do Yoga videos for kids increase their flexibility, but there are many Yoga poses for kids that will detox their body, build muscles, and promote healthy growth. Yoga is fairly low-power, but your kids will be working hard the entire time! Kids get a kick out of the different yoga poses which makes it even more fun!
Swimming – Freestyle swimming is a whole lot of fun, but proper swimming is one of the best forms of exercise your kids can do. You’ll find that your kids develop a lot of upper body strength, excellent cardiovascular conditioning, and even that self-discipline that will keep them working toward a goal.
Gymnastics or Dance Classes
If your child wants to feel like a grown-up, what better way to encourage that than by allowing them to participate in your daily gym classes? You’ll find that most gyms allow older children to attend the easier classes, and you can have fun working up a sweat with your child beside you.
Physical fitness is the key to keeping your kids healthy and strong, but the solution isn’t always to force THEM to do exercise. Sometimes it’s better to get in there and work out right next to them. Seeing your effort is often what it takes to inspire them to keep working harder, and you’ll encourage the formation of healthy habits that way.