With the lure of television, computers, tablets, phones and other electronic devices, it can be a struggle to motivate some kids to get off the couch and get active.
If this is a problem with your child, PBS.org recommends limiting your child’s TV and computer time. It also suggests scheduling play dates for your child, go to the playground and other places where kids will have fun while being active, and spending time being active as a family.
Once you get your child off the couch, it’s important to involve him or her in activities he or she will enjoy. The American Heart Association recommends that children older than 2 years old should be active for at least 30 minutes a day.
KidsHealth.org recommends choosing age-appropriate activities for your child.
For preschoolers, KidsHealth.org recommends involving them in activities that continue to develop their motor skills. Some activities include kicking and throwing a ball, jumping on one foot and completing obstacle courses.
For school-aged kids, KidsHealth.org suggests finding a sport – either team or individual – that your child shows interest in. If your child isn’t interested in joining an organized sport, consider having him or her try biking, hiking or even just playing outside.
For teens the challenge of being active can be time. As teens’ schedules get busy with school and afterschool jobs they might find it hard to fit in sports and other physical activities. Parents can help their teens manage their schedules to make time for sports and other interests, like yoga.