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Getting Kids Active

As a parent and a personal trainer one thing I like to see is children being active and not just sitting slouched in front of a screen playing games or on Facebook in their spare time.

All children should be physically active for at least one hour a day. If you are a Parent/Grandparent/Aunt or Uncle you can help by encouraging the children in your family to find activities they enjoy, and building physical activity into family life. Most children love running around a park or playing in a playground.

One reason why physical activity in children is so important is because it helps the child to maintain a healthy weight, but that’s not the only reason. Physical activity is part of the way children discover the world, and themselves. It helps build strong muscles and healthy bones, as well as improve self-confidence.

Anyone who's seen children on a playground know that most are naturally physically active and love to move around. But what might not be obvious is that climbing to the top of a slide or swinging from the monkey bars can help lead them to a lifetime of being active. As they get older, it can be a tough for kids to get enough daily activity. Reasons include increasing demands of school, a feeling of not being good at sports, a lack of active role models, and busy working families. Even if children have the time and want to be active, some parents aren’t always comfortable letting them freely run around the neighborhood as kids once did.

Not all children like organised sports like football or rugby, and you don’t all have to be gym goers. It can be as easy as just lacing up your boots and all going out for a walk, or bike ride and even just heading down to the local park to have a kick about or go on a nature walk.

If they do fancy trying out a sport, head down to your local sports centres like Markland Hill racquets club, where there are a number of sports they can try out and enjoy.

The recommended daily physical activity levels are:

Children aged under 5 years should do 180 minutes every day

Young people (5-18 years) should do 60 minutes every day

Adults (19-64 years) should do 150 minutes every week

Older adults (65+ years) should do 150 minutes every week.

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