Kids these days are spending less time outside, opting for the entertainment of media and technology from the comfort of the indoors. Evidence from child research has shown that young kids need a minimum of 60 minutes of physical activity to stay healthy. On top of that, exposing kids to an outdoor-oriented lifestyle helps their cognition, social development, and overall wellbeing.
With statistics showing that only 1 out of 10 Australian children play outside, how can parents make sure screens aren’t trapping their kids?
Integrate Them into Fun Outdoor Environments
Exposing your children to spaces that are fun and interesting can make them more likely to want to spend time in them. For instance, a school in Brisbane with decked out and well-maintained playground equipment would have a higher chance of engaging school kids to play during their breaks or after class.
Finding activities and locations that are attractive enough to peel them away from their gadgets is the first step, and once they start getting into the swing of things, it’ll be easier to form healthy habits.
By going to fun places that other families enjoy, it also helps them to be more comfortable socializing with other kids. Once they find playmates, they will have more incentive to return and even start considering other excursions. As long as you supervise them but give them the leeway to get in the dirt and climb freely, they can continue to see these activities as better uses of their time.
The whole pull of video games is their ability to evoke feelings of adventure and excitement, so being able to replicate this in real life takes some exploration. Bring them on trips and try new things with them, and you’ll be able to feed into their innate desire for fun and controlled adrenaline.
Doing these things while they are young is the best time because habits and attitudes are still more moldable. Show them that there are so many things to see in the world and it will show how confining being still really is.
Don’t feel limited about where you can take them, either. Studies show that kids who travel with their families end up doing better in school and having a higher cultural awareness. With more avenues for them to discover things, a healthy balance can be developed.
Get into Sports with Them
Sports activities are generally beneficial for youths, but using it as a bonding tool can help motivate their drive to keep being active. Multiple studies have shown that children emulate their parents’ behavior, so getting into an active lifestyle yourself creates an environment that is more conducive for them to get sporty.
By taking on sports, not only are you able to have a shared interest with your kids, but you can be a prime example for them and show the good that physical activity can do. Even if your child ends up wanting to do a different sport than you, make sure you give them the tools and encouragement to further pursue that lifestyle.
By utilizing these tactics, you can ensure that your children are growing up healthier and more fulfilled. With more time playing outside, they can become well-rounded individuals while having fun.