Recently, we posted some information about encouraging toddlers and preschoolers to become more active. It is also important for school-age kids and teenagers to become and stay active, especially with summer vacation approaching. Being active as a kid will help your child develop good habits such as cardiovascular fitness, weight management, and give them the tools to reduce stress. Activities with other children can also help build social and emotional skills while providing opportunities to increase their strength, endurance, and coordination. HealthyChildren.org reports that school-age children need at least 30 minutes of continuous activity, three times a week at a heart rate that is above their resting level.
Finding age appropriate activities is important for kids of all ages to keep them entertained and interested in physical activity. For school-age kids, this can involve games, organized or unorganized sports activities and family outings. During the summer months, many people think of swimming and playing on playgrounds, but don’t be afraid to try new and different activities. Going ice-skating is a great activity in an air conditioned building on a hot day. Trying out a different playground can be fun and exciting for kids. Organizing a neighborhood obstacle course or scavenger hunt can be a great way to get kids active with their friends. Karate, dance, or gymnastics can also be a great source of activity and can give your child the opportunity to make new friends. At this age, children have a pretty good idea of what they like and don’t like. Talk with your child to find activities that they enjoy and to introduce them to new activities. Being active with your children provides fun for the whole family and encourages a healthy lifestyle for all.
Some resources for the Portland Metro area for summer camps and activities can be found through local school districts, parks and recreation departments, and even local family blogs. A few resources are listed below:
Remember to get out there and play with your kids! Parents are the best example for their children when it comes to developing healthy habits. If you are concerned about your child’s ability to participate in physical fitness activities, you should speak to your pediatrician about your concerns. Beyond the Clinic’s physical therapists can also help address concerns such as poor coordination, difficulty keeling up with other kids, obesity, or recovering from injury. We can also work with parents to help recover from injuries and relieve pain so they can be active with their children. We work with families across the Portland metro area and can be reached at: 503-496-0385.
Blog post was provided courtesy of Crystal Bridges, DPT