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Health & Fitness - Importance of Exercise for Kids

Jan 11/2022
 

Topic of Content

  1. Why exercising is essential for kids?
  2. How to get your kids to exercise
  3. Conclusion

The importance of exercising is not exactly a new notion. It has been a vital part of leading a healthy life since ancient times. Ever since we have developed civilizations, we have vehemently preached that movement and exercising are essential to keeping your body healthy. And for a good reason. Exercising helps your body achieve peak health by engaging the Musco-skeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory, and nervous systems all at once. The benefits are obvious and evident. 

One factor that is overlooked mainly regarding physical fitness is that it is not something that is only meant for adults. The belief that you start exercising or paying attention to your health only when at a certain age is highly detrimental. The importance of exercising should be taught to kids from a young age and should be implemented in their lives on a broader level than it is right now. Exercise for kids should be imperative.

Why exercising is essential for kids?

1. Physical Development: exercise for kids under the age of 15 is the equivalent of using fertilizer for your plants. It helps them grow to their full potential and grow rapidly. Physical exercises for kids act on the growing muscle and skeletal tissue, giving them the required push to grow stronger and healthier. Morning exercises for kids help them be more efficient and energetic throughout the day; meanwhile, light activities like yoga help kids grow well while they sleep. 

2. Cognitive Development: exercise for kids is not just limited to their bodies; it goes beyond that. Physical exercise helps them develop good coordination skills, motor skills, and a better awareness of their bodies. Physical exercises for kids and brain exercises for kids play an important role in developing their cognitive performance. 

Whereas brain exercises for kids are focused more on their cerebral capacities. They target the areas like memory, critical thinking, concentration, etc. And at the age where their body is very susceptible to changes and works in favor of developing, it is the responsibility of their parents or guardians to make use of this window as best as they can.

physical and cognitive development through playing

3. Social Development: usually, when kids are encouraged or made to exercise, it is in sports for kids. These are not that complicated generally and are of the team variety rather than one-on-one. Team sports for kids are excellent for developing their social skills. Such sports provide an ample amount of exercise for kids and allow them to work as a team. The social skills that sports teach are beyond just interaction with your peers but building character amongst the kids. It encourages them to learn how to work well with others and not be self-centered. 

kids playing together as a team

4. Moral values: exercise for kids leads them towards self-awareness. They are more connected with their bodies through the mind-body connections formed through long periods of regular exercising. The awareness it brings transcends just physical aspects and makes them more aware and in control of their minds. 

The mental health of a child is directly affected and thus enables them to make better decisions through critical thinking, employing the full extent of their morality. Also, sports for kids involve values like sharing, paying attention to your teammates, valuing your team above winning, caring for fellow players, etc. 

5. Discipline and Punctuality:  discipline and punctuality go hand in hand with sports. They are easy to learn while they are implemented through a regime like a sport. Warm-up exercises for kids alone teach them how much discipline and responsibility go into anything of value. The sports for kids which involve a time-specific routine - like basketball or football, teach kids to value each second and thus make them punctual. 

6. Health consciousness: once exercise for kids is a daily occurrence and something they indulge in wholeheartedly, they will be more aware of their health status in general. This will make them conscious of their unhealthy habits that harm their health. It will make them opt for healthier options or curb bad, unhealthy habits altogether. Of course, this is a gradual process, but it will be worth it in the end. 

How to get your kids to exercise

1. Simple exercises for kids: just because exercise for kids is a must, it doesn't mean that it is anything like exercise for adults. This is something that will rely on their age, build, and tolerance. Picking up simple exercises for kids is the best first step to introducing exercise in their lives, especially if they have been living a sedentary lifestyle up until now. Given the lockdown situation, that has been the case for many kids. So start small, pick light exercises with few reps, and build up as you go. 

2. Fun exercises for kids: plenty of exercises are available for kids that will not exhaust them mentally. Pick a sport they like, or a physical activity they like - hiking, running, swimming, cycling, etc., and make it the way for them to get their daily exercise done. Once you make exercise for kids a fun activity, one they look forward to, you will have no issues making it a routine. 

kids doing fun exercises of their choice

3. Yoga exercises for kids: sometimes, the state of their bodies is limiting. You might be dealing with a child with an illness or an obese child. In such cases, yoga exercises for kids will help you make them move without any strain on their bodies or organs. Yoga is, in general, light on the body but heavy on the mind type of exercise. When used correctly, it might be the correct set of exercises for kids to lose weight. 

4. Do it together: the best way to get your kid to exercise is through leading by example. If you encourage them to exercise regularly while staying immobile yourself, it will be just preaching and no practice. Do these exercises for kids with them. It will show them your belief in what you are trying to teach them and feel like a pillar of constant support and inspiration to see you right beside them. 

father playing with kids

Conclusion

Today's kids are facing challenges we never did when we were their age. It is hard for grown-ups to relate to their struggle, but we can still provide them with empathetic support and the means to live their best lives. Exercise for kids is one such element. It was crucial even before the pandemic hit their generation, but now it is even more important to remember the importance of movement. Make sure the kids are invested in exercising, and they will carry on without any pestering on your part.


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