Let’s Hear it for the Kids
We all know how important it is for adults to keep fit and exercise regularly for our health, happiness and well being but what about our kids, are they getting enough? Being Springtime I think it’s time to check in on our little lambs and make sure that they are getting the fitness that they deserve.
The NHS guidelines for physical activity in children and young people between 5 and 18 years old are that they should do a minimum of an hour a days exercise up to several hours a day and that vigorous activities should be taken up to three times a week. The recommendation is that all children should avoid a sedentary lifestyle or sitting for long periods of time. You can find more information about this by visiting the NHS website https://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/fitness/Pages/physical-activity-guidelines-for-young-people.aspx and it’s well worth a read.
It includes exercises for babies such as tummy time along with how much they need, adults aged 19 to 64 and guidelines for the over 65’s so it’s a really good resource to read and pass on if you want to keep fit and healthy as you grow.
Getting this level of activity is fine during the school term as they have two short breaks; morning and afternoon with a longer lunch break and having watched children at play time I know that they race around tagging each other, playing football and cartwheeling across fields. Add to that a choice to walk to school in the morning and afternoon and a couple of clubs a week and we are fairly confident, as parents, that they are getting that 60 minutes a day that they need. Add to that strengthening vigorous exercise two to three times a week in the shape of games and clubs they choose and we can be sure that they are on the right track.
It is, however, very difficult to get this level of activity during the holidays when many of us are like birds on the nest, Mum tagging Dad quickly as they pass off to work and making sure that the little ones are cared for. I’ve also noticed that children wake earlier in the morning due to less activity in the day making everyone tired the next day. This leads to a spiral of inactivity, you’re tired so you don’t go racing around a park or meet with friends, which means that you’re more likely to have less sleep which means that you’re even more tired the next day and so it goes.
This may be why I hear parents bemoaning the holidays as their children exhaust them and they go back to work for a rest. It’s a shame because we all love our children and being with them, but wow, keeping up with the level of activity that they are supposed to have….whilst working, well that’s another story. At the end of the day we all want to be at the dinner table with a story to tell and contended children in the knowledge that you will all sleep well tonight!
Luckily we have options, as a parent you can have a look around and choose some good clubs for them to join in the holidays and there are plenty about. You can choose just a mornings activity, a day or a week whichever suits you best. This way they get the vigorous levels of exercise that they need and are excited in the morning and content when they get home. Add to this a day in the garden with friends and perhaps a visit out and you’ve suddenly got a well rounded week in which the kids are happy and energized and you are not on your knees by the end of it!
At Oxley Sports Centre we offer holiday activities in the holiday periods and not just any activities either, hamsterballs in the swimming pool, games, arts and crafts, talent shows & super science days to name but a few and with the best will in the world it’s hard to give children that level of fun and activity at home. So come on give it a try, let your little ones flap their wings on some safe branches for a while before you all get home and flop in the nest tonight.
Whether you’re looking for Children’s Holiday Activities, ongoing classes like Kid’s Zumba, climbing or a family membership that gives you a chance to keep fit together please call Oxley Sports Centre on 01935 818277 or visit our website http://www.oxleysc.com/. We look forward to seeing you soon.
Article published in the April edition of the Conduit 2018