Motivating kids to be active

We all know how important and beneficial it is to keep kids active (and us too), but how do we motivate kids to want to move?  One way is the playground.  Yes, that’s right – just the playground.  If you watch the kids, most of them are naturally physically active and love to move around.  The neat thing to realize is that climbing to the top of a slide or swinging from the monkey bars can be a start to a lifetime of being active.

Healthy, physically active kids also are more likely to be academically motivated, alert, and successful.  Besides having a healthy body, self esteem also keeps building.  Here is a list of some of the benefits:

  • strong muscles and bones
  • weight control
  • decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes
  • better sleep
  • a better outlook on life

So what motivates kids?  Here are 3 keys:

  1. Choosing the right activities for a child’s age.  If they don’t like the activity they are in, they will be bored or frustrated or both
  2. Giving kids plenty of opportunity to be active.  Kids need their parents support by taking them to classes as gymnastics, dance, karate and/or by providing  equipment and taking them to playgrounds and other active spots.
  3. Keeping the focus on fun.  Kids won’t do something they don’t enjoy for very long.

Parents and other adults play a large part in keeping children happy and having fun and exercise is no exception.  Have fun exercising!