What are your kids doing today? I’ll be honest. As my kids have grown older it’s easy to let them grab a screen and occupy themselves. In 2023 our kids have become really good at keeping in contact with their mates online and finding a million and one YouTube videos, games, and apps to keep them happy. They’re quiet and it means I can get all my jobs done. But, when they’re sitting in front of their screens they’re not moving. The Australian government recommends that kids over 5 years of age get at least 60 minutes a day of physical activity. There are plenty of options for kids sport in Lake Macquarie.
Remember the good ol’ days?
When I reflect on the good old days, when I was a kid, I was active. I was out and about in the street or the park. As the day came to an end, mum would call me in for dinner. It was a tough choice, more playtime or food!? I’d be running, throwing, catching, chasing, or climbing. Anything that looked fun. I was fearless and always active. Times have changed and we see kids less and less out on the streets of our neighbourhood as well as in local parks just running around having fun.
Kids weight and health challenges
Our nation is increasingly becoming more inactive and we’re seeing both weight and health challenges more than ever. Australian Government statistics suggest two in three adults, and one in four children, are overweight or even obese. They report only one in five kids do an hour’s worth of physical activity every day. This change is serious. Our kids are so important and we all want to keep them healthy, happy, and having fun.
One hour per day
Daily exercise helps kids understand how great their body and mind can feel. Once they’re playing a sport, swimming or just running around in the park, they remember the fun side of it. Bring some friends or a sibling along too and it just gets better. When a child exercises you’re just looking for their heart rate to be elevated and for them to be breathing harder, that’s it.
Six benefits to exercise
Exercising has so many benefits for kids.
- Their bodies benefit from healthy bones, muscles, and joints.
- Hearts and lungs get stronger.
- A child’s body becomes stronger and more coordinated.
- Even their brain benefits from improved concentration and thinking skills.
- You’ll also find balance, flexibility, and posture improvements.
- Often a child’s weight will be healthier and they’re less likely to suffer from diabetes or heart-related problems.
Make physical activity fun!
Parents are the key here. It’s vital that parents explore different options in an effort to make physical activity for children fun, not too competitive, challenging, or even boring.
- Try a few different sports or fitness based activities to figure out together what they enjoy most or excel at.
- Include physical activities as part of your normal day.
- Take the dog for a walk together.
- Walk to the shops or school instead of driving.
- When your kids have been good, reward them with a trip to the park, or a bike ride rather than screen time.
- Set a good example by being active yourself.
Healthy and happy kids
The time is now. Being active and engaging in physical activities each day will put a smile on their face and a sparkle in their eye. It will be the highlight of their day, plus have many advantageous health and wellbeing benefits. They’ll sleep better, be more positive, have more energy and be happier. There are plenty of exciting and physically challenging fun kids activities to try around Lake Mac. Kids’ sport in Lake Macquarie can be loads of fun. See which one works for your family.