As we all know, exercise is good for everyone, whether it is for kids or adults. A recent study published in BMC Public Health found that encouraging children to participate in outdoor activities can be beneficial in reducing childhood obesity, improving mental health, and minimising sedentary behaviour in the future. In addition, participating in physical activities outdoors also builds young children’s motor skills and lowers the possibility of Vitamin D deficiency, keeping them strong as they grow up.
However, with the rise of technology, there may be times when you find your children glued to a digital screen rather than engaging in physical activities. As a parent, you can persuade your child to move away from a sedentary lifestyle and have fun outdoors by investing in some helpful aids. So without further ado, here are some things you can invest in to promote outdoor play:
One way your kids can beat the heat is with inflatable sprinklers. You can easily install them by connecting them to your garden hose. Unlike inflatable pools, these sprinklers take up less space and water, which makes them perfect for families with small gardens. For your babies, you can opt to use flat, inflatable pads that they can safely sit on. For a bit more fun, you can get water soakers or blasters for your kids, so they can imitate their favourite superheroes on TV shows like Black Lightning.
As babies grow into toddlers, they often become more curious and tend to explore things around them. And while they may enjoy walking, toddlers are still young and get tired pretty easy. Modern pushchairs can help address this problem. As seen in the models from iCandy, ultra-compact and multi-functional travel systems are excellent for growing families, no matter where you’re walking around. Some pushchairs are even built with optimised tyre treads for off-road exploring, so you can take your tots along unpaved areas if need be. If you travel a lot, it’s good to invest in a pushcart that can transform into different modes, such as a car seat or even as a carrycot for secure overnight sleep.
When it comes to flexible travel options, scooters are great options for children. The scooters by Trunki, in particular, are wonderful because they can be folded, and showcase child-friendly designs for kids up to age six with their retractable handlebars. The scooter even provides portability with its folding mechanism and a clip-on/off strap so it can be carried easily. Before allowing your children to play on the scooter in large public spaces, you have to first assess if your child is capable of braking on time and avoiding large objects. They should also wear a helmet and protective padding to ensure they are safe while using the scooter.
For extremely active kids, you can give them the opportunity to release their energy on their very own outdoor trampoline. This is also one way that children can engage in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). A study from the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity identified that 60 minutes of MVPA is best for children and adolescents, aged 5-17 years. Although children usually do engage in physical activities at school, it may not be enough action for them. Having a trampoline in your garden gives your child a chance to have fun and exercise without having to stray too far from home. When choosing a trampoline for your child, make sure that the netting surrounding the trampoline is secure and flexible. The net entrance should also be easy to open and close via a zipper, to ensure no accidents come from bouncing out of the enclosed space.
Contributed post by Jessica Torrance.