Medical Director Says Physical Activity is Important to Keep Kids Healthy
September 14, 2020
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that one in every five children is overweight, and there can be several contributing factors. Amanda Magrini, MD, Medical Director at Northern Nevada Medical Group Family Medicine, says it's best to focus on simple ways to get your child moving. "Whether you are at home managing remote work, distance learning or otherwise, your child can find fun in these simple activities," she says. Here are several suggestions.
- YouTube has a lot of great content to make movement interactive, silly and unique. Try Go Noodle, which provides simple videos for your child to follow along. These self-guided activities mean parents can be hands free while their kiddo moves and shakes.
- Set up an outdoor activity station with things around the house. Bring outdoor-safe toys, books, or board games outside to enhance your child’s time getting fresh air. Encourage one of the activities to be movement-friendly such as a scavenger hunt, BINGO, or similar. You can find sample printouts on many online websites.
- If your child enjoys music or dancing, encourage a family dance off. It’s as simple as turning on some tunes, finding a space for everyone (inside or outside) and spending 15-20 minutes dancing it out.
- Weather permitting, a walk before or after dinner is a great way to get everyone in the house some fresh air and it encourages exercise. Making exercise positive is important with kids. Engage your kids by letting them choose the route or make it a steps challenge where the winner gets a prize at the end of the week.
- If you have pets, get your kids involved in their playtime too. Pets love adventure so why not let your kids lead the way a few times a week. Chasing, tossing the ball, or even practicing walking on a leash are a few easy ways to get your kids moving. No pets, no problem. Volunteer at a local pet shelter. They may need help walking dogs or finding other play opportunities for their furry guests.