Since the 1970’s the percentage of children and teenagers affected by obesity has tripled. We want our children to be fit and healthy, but the challenges of life online have made this a difficult goal to aim for. One of the key benefits of moving is the release of our natural ‘happy hormone’ endorphins, our body’s natural answer to reduce stress and minimize its effects. Life right now is stressful but tapping into exercise and fitness will break the stress cycle for our children. Here we unpack some of the best after school activities to get your kids moving that they will love.
One of our favorite after school activities, dancing is a brilliant way to get exercise because music is a great motivator. Whether you are moving aside the coffee table and cranking up the radio or enrolling in formal lessons, dance gives both a cardio and muscle conditioning workout. It also stimulates and builds new neuromuscular pathways which connect the brain to the body in new ways and promotes development in all areas.
Most children will respond to music. With the variety of styles to choose from, ballet, hip-hop, and everything in between, there will be a dance style to suit your child’s personality.
Martial arts such as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Karate, or Taekwondo, equip children with far more than well-exercised bodies. Aside from the muscle conditioning that kids get from martial arts training, they also learn the skills of focus and concentration which they carry through to all areas of life. As part of the process of mastering skills, they learn resilience and the ability to persevere even when things are tough.
Think Beyond Regular Sports
Naturally sporty kids will find their way onto the sports field with a little encouragement, but for those who aren’t competitive by nature, taking part in baseball, football or other competitive sports won’t motivate them.
If you have a child who doesn’t fit into the regular sporty box, think beyond the commonly practiced sports for after school activities. Maybe they’d love to do rock-climbing or canoeing. Archery, badminton, or ping pong might match their skill set and bring them hours of joy. If surfing isn’t for them, stand-up paddle boarding might hit the sweet spot. Explore the options until you find the thing that brings your child joy and aids their development.
Take The Stairs
A big part of the switch to living healthy is to look for ways to build exercise into everyday life. Our focus is often on how to do things more quickly and efficiently, but that means missing out on some great opportunities to move. You can build exercise into everything you do as a family.
If you have the choice of an elevator or stairs, choose the stairs. Instead of looking for parking close to the store entrance, park as far away as what you’ll manage and gain the benefit of the extra walking. Hopscotch down pathways, do squats or lunges while waiting for the kettle to boil, do a calming stretch routine before bed.
The key is to make it fun. Have a daily planking party where the whole family holds a plank position long enough for someone to tell a joke. See if you can hold your plank while you’re laughing.
After School Activities in Coconut Creek
In this online world, motivating children to move is a key that will unlock their healthy future. Finding the type of after school activities that work for your individual child will reduce the amount of coercing that you have to do to get them to go regularly.
If you’re looking for a preschool that embraces a healthy, fit lifestyle as part of a balanced early education program, contact Providence Children’s Academy . We offer plenty of after school activities that will aid your child in their physical and cognitive development. Ready to learn more? Call Providence Children’s Academy at 954-570-6914, today!