Benefits of Exercise
Children and adolescents should participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate physical activity most days of the week, daily if possible. Any activity will help – brisk walking, playing tag, jumping rope or swimming – as long as it adds up to one hour a day. Some of the benefits exercise and physical activity offer children and teens are:
- strong muscles and bones
- weight control
- lowered risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes
- better sleep
- improved focus and alertness
- a better outlook on life
- improved self-esteem
- possibly lower blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels
Motivating Youth To Be Active
How do you encourage your child to be physically active? Here are several suggestions:
- Provide the equipment your child needs and transportation to playgrounds and other locations.
- Make sure the activity is fun and enjoyable.
- Offer encouragement and praise your child’s efforts.
- Establish a schedule and routine by setting aside time each day for you and your child to engage in physical activities.
- Adopt a healthy lifestyle and set a good example for your family by beginning a healthier lifestyle yourself.
- Limit the number of hours your child is allowed to watch television, play video games or use the computer.
- Find out what your child likes and consider his/her suggestions in the physical activities you do together.