Although it seems like a simple pastime for them to have fun, physical activity in children helps them to better develop their different systems and achieve better general health.
Physical activity in children contributes to social development, fosters self-confidence, interaction and social integration. It can also reinforce healthy behavior to prevent adolescents from falling into the use of tobacco, drugs, and alcohol. Thus, in turn, you can obtain a better school performance.
It is convenient that children who are not accustomed to physical activities begin with light exercises and gradually increase them. As they adapt, the duration, frequency, and intensity will increase.
Also, it is recommended that children and youth with disabilities do physical activities. However, before starting, they should ask their treating doctor for a report indicating the type and number of exercises they can do, according to their limitations.
Activities for children according to age
For physical exercise to be healthy, it must be adapted to the physical condition, age and preferences of the child. Also, the most important thing is to enjoy, not the competition.
For infants, games on the floor or in the water are ideal. We can implement those in which arm and leg movements are necessary, such as finding and grabbing objects. They can also turn their head with gentle movements, push and play with other people.
Preschoolers (up to 5 years old):
Walking, cycling, swinging, running, games, jumping and activities in the water.
School and adolescents:
For these ages, physical activities are recommended in order to improve cardiorespiratory, muscular and bone system functions. These activities consist of games, sports, recreational trips or scheduled exercises.
To obtain greater health benefits, 60 minutes should be invested in moderate activities. This routine can be done in shorter times (for example, two sessions of 30 minutes, at least, three times a week).
Benefits of physical activities in children
The practice of physical activities is very important for the correct physical evolution of the child. A) Yes:
- Develops the locomotor system (bones, muscles, and joints)
- It develops the cardiovascular system (heart and lungs).
- It favors the control of the neuromuscular system (coordination and control of movements).
- Control weight and improve body posture.
- Maintains flexibility
- Develop strength and body posture.
- If your child is lazy, you may also learn What to do with a lazy child?
Some recommendations of physical activity in children
During the day you can take advantage of daily activities to perform exercises, in order to avoid a sedentary lifestyle.
- Use stairs instead of elevators or escalators.
- Move walking or cycling to school.
- Decrease the hours dedicated to television and video games.
- Accompany the adults to walk the dog.
- Incorporate the child in domestic tasks.
Types of activities
Directed physical activities
- School physical education to improve physical condition and body expression.
- The practice of games and sports for the development of physical qualities.
- Activities in nature.
Physical activities directed or spontaneous in free time
- Attend dance classes, gymnastics, swimming
- Train on a sports team.
- Children’s games: the rescue, the pillar-pilla, the game of the handkerchief, the hiding place, et cetera.
- Dances and dances.
- Games and sports and recreational activities
Suggestion before starting physical activities
Many parents believe that their children are lazy, due to ignorance of diseases such as hypotonia. This pathology consists of the decrease in muscle tone. As a consequence, the child exhibits laziness and rejection of physical activities.
For the above described, it is suggested that before starting any physical activity, parents consult a specialist to perform a medical checkup to the child. Thus, you can certify that you are in good health and can start with a proper routine.
Finally, it is important that physical activity is part of the daily activity. If practiced sporadically you will not get the same benefits as when it is done regularly. You must bear in mind that, with a minimum of exercises performed by the child, you will be fighting a sedentary lifestyle.
Also, do not forget the importance of initiating all these activities in childhood and, preferably, in the company of the family group. In this way, it will be easier for you to adopt the habit and be able to maintain it as an adult.