Kids love to play and be active. Physical activity should be part of their every day routine, and can be lots of fun for adults as well! There are so many benefits from encouraging your kids to be active from an early age, and establishing a routine early will help set them up for life. Some of the benefits of physical activity include:
- Strengthening of the cardiovascular system
- A stronger immune system
- Developing stronger bone and muscle structure
- Maintaining healthy weight
- Assisting in providing better sleep patterns
- Improved balance, coordination and flexibility
- Emotional wellbeing
- Opportunity to enhance social skills
Here at BodyICE HQ we have a whole bunch of kids – aged between 1 to 10 years. So we’ve put our heads together and come up with our favourite five activities for our active kids!
Yoga for Kids
Yoga can be great fun for kids, and provides a range of benefits such as good balance, introducing techniques for breathing and relaxation, gross motor development and mindfulness. Yoga is great for stretching and lengthening, helping kids enhance their flexibility while learning how to use their muscles in new ways. Yoga can help kids increase their confidence and feel part of a non-competitive group. If you do not have access to kid’s yoga classes in your area, fear not. There are numerous resources available online, as well as via books and dvds.
You can’t go wrong with a park! There are so many activities for kids to do, from playing in the playground, riding a bike or scooter, flying a kite, kicking the footy or soccer ball, or even just rolling down a hill! Parks can offer huge benefits to families – they are free, available all year round (no excuses – just rug up in cold weather), offer a good hit of vitamin D on a sunny day, and don’t generally require a lot of advance planning. There are usually other kids to play with, which provides the opportunity for socialisation. Playing on the playground equipment gives kids the chance to develop gross motor skills in stepping, climbing, crawling, swinging, pulling, pushing, hanging and jumping.
Yes, ok, I admit that we are lucky to live in a beautiful part of the world where the beach is our backyard, and swimming is a part of our every day life during the warmer months. Swimming can also be enjoyed in any body of water - a lake, the community pool, a creek, or even just a tub in the backyard! Swimming can be a great form of cardiovascular exercise, using every muscle group in the body. Learning to synchronise what your arms and legs are doing is ideal for developing kid’s coordination. And one of the most important benefits of teaching your kids to swim is teaching them how to stay safe around the water.
Organised Team Sport
From the age of around 6 - 7, there are some really great benefits to getting your kids involved in a team sport. Participating in a team sport will help your child foster positive friendships and a sense of camaraderie, along with teamwork and cooperation skills. Committing to a team means your child is also committing to regular exercise, developing social skills and contributing to their overall physical health. Kids also gain an understanding of winning and losing, which can aid in developing their resilience.
I’ve Saved the Best for Last!
What could another great activity for our active kids be? Housework of course! Housework is a great activity, as not only are you getting a nice clean house, your kids are learning to work together as a family. Helping around the house can teach them responsibility, and they may even earn some pocket money! Make sure the jobs you choose for your children are age appropriate, put on some music, let in some fresh air and get to it.
So there you have it, five accessible activities to incorporate into your daily routine. Make sure your kids are well equipped to participate in an active lifestyle, such as sneakers, bicycle or scooter along with the relevant safety gear. Set a positive example by enjoying an active lifestyle yourself, and don’t forget to have fun!
Don't forget - kids will be kids and they will at some point have some bumps and bruises. Check out our BodyICE Kids Range of ice & heat packs to provide that instant comfort when your little ones need it most!