The best exercise for kidsPosted: Updated:
PHOENIX – It’s a little sad to me that most kids these days don’t get to play (now called exercise) the way I did.
I spent hours riding my bike with friends, exploring, and playing games in the yard or street. As long as I was home by dinner, my parents let us run loose.
One summer when I was about 10 years old, I was thrilled when I got to take tennis lessons at a school. I rode my bike there. Who knows how far away it really was, but it sure took a long time to get there and I had a blast.
It was never called “exercise,” or “working out.” Of course, things are different now. You hardly dare take your eyes off your children for fear they’ll fall prey to something or someone horrible.
So how do we encourage our kids to be active in a way that’s fun and not forced? For the little ones, I think the best answer is to make being active simply playing.
That’s where you, the parent, come in. I know you’ve had it after a long, stressful day. And maybe all you want to do on weekends is catch up on laundry and get some down time. Believe me, I get it. But I also know that if you don’t get going, neither will they. If you can’t drag yourself off the couch, why should they?
The answer for many parents I know is a different team sport every season like going from school to swimming lessons or soccer practice, then racing home for dinner, homework, and bed.
No wonder the whole family’s exhausted! I played team sports (in school) and the benefits of team play can’t be overstated but I think exercise should be fun and that means you and your kids walking or biking together or heading to the park for play.
No stress, nobody keeping score.