By setting the foundations of life, parents directly influence the way that children feel about living a healthy lifestyle. Children watch what their parents do so if mum and dad are prioritising health and fitness, chances are that the kiddies will want to get involved as well. Daily exercise is imperative for normal growth and development in kids and the benefits are more than just reducing the risk of disease. There is also evidence of better academic performance with regular physical activity plus of course, stress relief.
By exercise, it doesn't have to mean hitting the gym! Get creative in the way you move and try some of these ideas...
1. Ad-ercise; Most famllies spend some time watching television each day. Why not make it fun and create a bit of a challenge? Every ad-break everyone has to do as many squats as they can!
2. Park further away than you need to. If you're heading to the shops, park a block away and walk the extra distance. If it's a nice day, then getting some Vitamin D is good for you as well as the kids.
3. Allocate time for family exercise every day. It doesn't have to be for long and you can mix it up. Play a game of soccer together, go for a walk along the beach with the dog or put on an exercise DVD and have the kids join in!
4. Combine technology with movement. The kids may love getting on the Wii when they get home from school so why not buy some active games and play together? There are dancing games, tennis games and even boxing games on the Wii fit!
It's important to teach kids that fitness isn't about six packs and sex appeal, it's about moving to stay healthy! If you're a busy parent and are struggling to find time to fit in some daily exercise, then getting active with your kids is a great way to get healthy together, reinforce family bonds and create some wonderful family traditions.
Here's to a happy and healthy you!