Kids often imitate their parents. They pick up habits, both good and bad, from watching what their parents do. The good news is, you can encourage them to keep healthy habits and take care of your own health at the same time. A great way to start is to get active. Studies show kids are more active when their parents are too. And getting them active at a young age will help them stay focused on their health as they grow older.
There are many benefits for kids who take care of their health. They have better self-esteem, stronger bones, and lower risk of certain diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure. Kids need at least 60 minutes of physical activity each day, and adults should get at least 30 minutes per day. It doesn’t all have to be at one time either, so you and your family can break it up throughout your day – a few minutes at a time.
Make family fitness a priority this year with some of these ideas:
TAKE SIMPLE STEPS
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Limit TV time and keep the TV out of your child’s bedroom.
- Walk around the block after a meal.
- Make a new house rule: No sitting during TV commercials. Get creative with new rules to keep everyone active.
- Give your kids toys to keep them physically active like balls, kites, and jump ropes.
- Encourage your children to join a school or community sports team.
MAKE TIME FOR FAMILY FUN
Keep moving! Schedule a time each day for an outdoor activity with your kids. Hike a local nature trail, ride a bike path, or run through the sprinkler when it’s hot outside. Remember to always put on sunscreen and drink lots of water. Rainy days don’t need to slow you down either. Just stay inside, turn on some music and have a dance party.
Schedule family time. Take a walk or play a family game of tag after dinner each night. Pick activities where everyone has to move, like catch or soccer.
Plant a garden. Taking care of a garden gives your kids a reason to go outside every day. Not only will your kids learn about the food system, but they’ll also get the chance to eat fresh, healthy foods. Chip in with chores. Involve the whole family in household chores – cleaning, vacuuming, or yard work. These are unexpected ways for your family to get active, plus they can help you check items off your to-do list.
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