Physical Activity: Nurturing Healthy Habits in Children

Author: one tough job

From the moment they're born, children are full of curiosity and energy to explore the world around them. They wiggle, squirm, reach, and grasp as they develop their motor abilities. As they grow, physical activity becomes an important part of their lives. Physical activity helps play a fundamental role in how a child’s brain and body develops.

Here are some strategies learned from the authors Teresa M. McDevitt and Jeanne Ellis Ormrod in their book “Child Development and Education” to help children stay active and healthy:

  • Incorporate Physical Activity: Encourage regular breaks that include physical activity to increase children's attention during demanding tasks. Outdoor playtime and recess are crucial for letting children relax and recharge.
  • Provide Safe Equipment: Ensure that children have access to safe and age-appropriate equipment, encouraging them to experiment and exercise in a secure environment. Playgrounds usually have swings, slides, and climbing structures, but we need to choose them wisely to ensure kids can play safely. Remember, basic outdoor areas for running and playing also encourage physical activity.
  • Make It Enjoyable: Keep exercise fun and enjoyable, using children's interests and pleasure in physical self-express. Offering a variety of activities can cater to different preferences.
  • Promote Self-Improvement: Encourage children to focus on personal improvement rather than competition with their peers. Celebrate their individual progress and achievements.
  • Avoid Depletion: Be careful not to overdo it, too much activity can lead to injuries. Variety in physical activities and avoiding specialization in one sport too early are key.
  • Equal Opportunities: Ensure that all children, regardless of their gender or abilities, have equal opportunities to participate in athletic programs and physical activities.

Physical activity is not just a form of entertainment for children; it's a building block for their physical, cognitive, and social development. By incorporating physical activity into their daily routines and making it an enjoyable experience, parents and educators can help children develop healthy habits that will serve them well throughout their lives. So, let's get children moving, playing, and enjoying the benefits of an active lifestyle!

other articles and videos we love