Why Kids Should Be Exercising and How to Get Them Moving

Childhood development forms the foundation of a person’s life. It is the critical time when a child’s circumstances shape their character and create a framework for the future. Therefore, you must do your best to impart good practices during this period to give them the best chance of living a long, fulfilling life.

One of the primary essential habits has to do with health and fitness. Unfortunately, societal norms lean toward sedentary lifestyles.

As a result, we are less active, so our health is often adversely affected. It is crucial to prevent this negative trend, if only for the sake of our quality of life. 

At the top of the list of reasons to institute change is encouraging our children to follow suit and get more exercise. However, before we attempt to get them moving, we should better understand why kids need to exercise.

9 Min Exercise For Kids – Home Workout By Little Sports

Why is exercise so important for children?

Encouraging a child to exercise gives them a chance to get all the benefits of fitness, including:

Better health

With more exercise comes less risk of developing severe health conditions like obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.

In addition, their mental health also sees an improvement when they get sufficient amounts of exercise. Studies have linked extended periods of screen time with higher numbers of children with reported cases of depression and anxiety.

Better academic performance

Exercise has been linked with higher academic performance. A child’s brain is activated during periods of enhanced physical activity, making them more open to and better at learning.

Enhanced social skills

Typically, children get most of their exercise when they are playing. Playtime encourages them to gather in groups where games are selected, thus driving their social interaction.

Naturally, such groupings become life’s classrooms where the children learn how to navigate group dynamics. Critically, they gain valuable education in matters like conflict resolution, inclusion, and compromise.

Improved self-esteem

Participating in physical activities drives children to try new things and learn new skills. Over time, they gravitate toward building upon the skills they gained while pushing the limits of their abilities.

Every accomplishment or triumph becomes a confidence booster. In the end, they go into their adulthood with enough self-esteem to help them navigate the challenges they encounter. 

Increased Vitamin D

Vitamin D is an essential nutrient primarily derived from the sun. It promotes strong bones and builds a robust immunity. The time your children spend outdoors increases their levels of vitamin D while they play and enjoy themselves.

Outdoor playtime is also another form of exercise; therefore, two of their most basic needs are met at once. Ensure you also protect their skin from harmful UV rays by teaching your children how to apply sunscreen correctly.

How to Get Your Kids Moving

The best approach lies in galvanizing them to explore. If you present children with a list of options or even encourage them to state their preferences, they are more likely to be open to the idea of exercising.

Furthermore, children appreciate being allowed to choose. Therefore, when they get the chance to decide which activities they will participate in, their selection is driven by interest, which increases the likelihood of them keeping to it.

You should also be mindful of the fact that your children are observant. Their lifestyles will mimic yours. Consequently, you must strive to set a good example by adopting an active and healthy living standard.

If all else fails, use what they love: technology and the internet. Not every child will be open to spending time outdoors. If your kids are genuinely hesitant to go out, why not cue up a children’s workout video from an online platform and encourage them to follow along?

If you have them, you may also use interactive video games like StepMania. This way, they get to combine play and exercise into one fun activity they will be eager to keep going back to. 

For more ideas on how to get your child moving, visit or consider a membership with your local club. Optionally, many clubs also have organized sports programs you can enroll in for more structure.