WHO statistics show that four out of five adolescents do not get enough physical activity in 2020. About 1 out of 3 children is either overweight or obese in the United States. Overweight teens have a 70% chance of becoming overweight or obese adults.
On November, 25, 2020, after almost a year of research on how the COVID-19 pandemic influences the health, WHO issued the new Guidelines, stating that an average of 60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity is recommended for children and adolescents.
Here are 8 tips how to help your kids be more active and stay fit during the COVID-19 pandemic era
1. Parents play a key role. Children who regularly see their parents enjoying sports and physical activity are more likely to do so themselves.
2. Schedule exercise. Now when most of us are home bound due to COVID-19, weekly schedule has changed greatly. Talk to your family and set certain time for the exercise and help your kids follow the schedule.
3. Find out what is fun for each of your kids. Kids of different age or gender may not be keen on the same activity. Help each of your kids find a sport that they enjoy now. Tastes may change over time. No problem - different activities develop different skills. The more kids enjoy their activity, the more likely they will do it.
4. Provide a fun environment. Make sure your kids love their sport clothes, shoes and equipment. Smart idea is to let them choose by themselves and buy new sport suit, a t-shirt with their favourite soccer player's name, a fancy pair of sneakers, jump ropes, balls. It's the hight time now to buy a bike of yor son's dream, a skateboard, roller skaters or whatever they have always been dreamming about.
5. Provide easy access to the sport suit, shoes and equipment. You can even keep some of these items seen all the time. This will remind your kids about doing exercise.
6. Provide a safe and comfy environment. Make sure the site for the sport or activity is safe, away from traffic or windows /in case of ball games/. If the activity is done indoors, the recommended Air Temperature is 64.4 °F or 18 °C and the Humidity level between 40-60%
7. Teach your kids to track the sedetary and activity time. Using smart devices worn on the wrist or hip that track physical activity is fun, kids of all ages love devices and they love to learn more out themselves. “Monitoring how active you are is very good feedback,” says Juana Willumsen, a WHO technical officer. “That is important because we tend to think we might be more active. We tend to underestimate how much time we spend sedentary.”
8. Not too much. Teach your kids to listen to their body. Exercise and physical activity should be fun not hurt. If this occurs, teach them they should slow down or try a less vigorous activity. This tip is absolutely important if your child is obese or has chronical desease. Talk with your child's doctor before you start.
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