Most kids love to run around and be as active as possible when they are really young, but as they get older, many children start to get more sedentary. They have phones and tablets and games consoles to keep them entertained and a run around the park starts to feel like a lot less fun.
Of course, it’s so important that children of all ages do get lots of exercise, and participating in sports and exercise clubs is a great way to build stamina, friendships, and good life habits in general.
That being the case, as a parent, if your tween or teen is not naturally active, you need to encourage them to be so. How do you do that? Here are a few good places to start:
Set a good example
If your kids do not see you doing anything more active than lifting chips to your mouth as you binge the latest drama online, then you are going to have a hard time persuading them that sports and exercise are important. So, model good behavior; go to yoga classes every week, join an adult softball team; hit the gym. Show them that exercise is important and can be fun and they will follow.
Praising your kids for making an effort to exercise can work well too. Take them to their favorite restaurant after a game; tell them you are proud of them. You could even get them prized from Challenge Coins Ltd when their team tried hard in a season. Anything you can do to show them how proud you are of their efforts is good, but make sure you praise them for effort, not just when they excel because that could be pretty offputting for them, not to mention stressful too.
Find the fun
Many more teens and tweens could be persuaded to exercise if it was fun, So, if they aren’t into baseball or the gym or whatever, then why not go on a natural while and see how many cute birds you can spot or set up a treasure hunt across town with a fun prize at the end? The more fun it is, the more likely they are to engage.
Make it a social event
Tweens and teens love to be social, so why not conspire with the parents of their friends to organize some fun activities at the weekend that will keep them active? Things like paintball are surprisingly good at getting kids moving, and if they’re doing it with their friends in a relaxed environment, they’ll enjoy it a whole lot more.
Use their interests
If they love dogs, let them walk a neighbor dog to get exercise more if they’re into space, get them walking in the woods to see the stars. If exercise is linked to what they already love, it won’t feel like such a chore.
It can be hard getting tweens and teens to exercise when they don’t want to, but if you are a good example, make it fun and give them lots of encouragement, you might be pleasantly surprised.